You can view the full text of this article for free using the link below.

Title: Are alternative food networks winning strategies to increase organic SMEs profitability? Evidence from a case study

Authors: Riccardo Testa; Antonino Galati; Giorgio Schifani; Maria Crescimanno; Anna Maria Di Trapani; Giuseppina Migliore

Addresses: Department of Agricultural, Food and Forest Sciences, University of Palermo, Viale delle Scienze, Ed. 4, 90128 Palermo, Italy ' Department of Agricultural, Food and Forest Sciences, University of Palermo, Viale delle Scienze, Ed. 4, 90128 Palermo, Italy ' Department of Agricultural, Food and Forest Sciences, University of Palermo, Viale delle Scienze, Ed. 4, 90128 Palermo, Italy ' Department of Agricultural, Food and Forest Sciences, University of Palermo, Viale delle Scienze, Ed. 4, 90128 Palermo, Italy ' Department of Agricultural, Food and Forest Sciences, University of Palermo, Viale delle Scienze, Ed. 4, 90128 Palermo, Italy ' Department of Agricultural, Food and Forest Sciences, University of Palermo, Viale delle Scienze, Ed. 4, 90128 Palermo, Italy

Abstract: The aim of this study was to understand how and how much alternative food networks (AFNs) contribute to increasing the profitability of the organic SMEs, compared to traditional organic sales channels. For this purpose, an economic analysis and an in-depth interview were carried out in a case study located in the Sicilian northern coast. Findings showed a clear convenience of the participation to alternative food networks compared to the case in which all farm production was conferred to traditional sales channels, highlighting an increase both of farm profit (+76.9%) and net income (+72.1%). However, the in-depth interview revealed that AFNs are a mean, not only to have economic benefits, but also to satisfy consumers' social and environmental needs. According to the findings of this study, alternative food networks could represent a strategy to increase the profitability of many small and medium-sized farms (organic and non-organic) managed by the farmer and his family, especially in an increasingly global and diversified market.

Keywords: local food; short supply chain; economic sustainability; business management; business performance; Sicily; net income; organic farming; profit; farm shop; farmers' markets.

DOI: 10.1504/IJGSB.2020.105583

International Journal of Globalisation and Small Business, 2020 Vol.11 No.1, pp.65 - 82

Received: 30 Jul 2018
Accepted: 22 Mar 2019

Published online: 28 Feb 2020 *

Full-text access for editors Access for subscribers Free access Comment on this article