Title: Which strategic orientation for systemic integration? A study on the organic olive oil industry

Authors: Raffaele Silvestri; Savino Santovito; Piermichele La Sala; Francesco Contò

Addresses: Department of Economic Sciences, University of Bari 'Aldo Moro', Largo Abbazia Santa Scolastica, 70124 Bari, Italy ' Department of Economic Sciences, University of Bari 'Aldo Moro', Largo Abbazia Santa Scolastica, 70124 Bari, Italy ' Department of Economics, University of Foggia, Largo Papa Giovanni Paolo II, 1 71121 Foggia, Italy ' Department of Economics, University of Foggia, Largo Papa Giovanni Paolo II, 1 71121 Foggia, Italy

Abstract: In the agro-food industry, a hard constraint to farms development is the business dimension: the strategy of horizontal aggregation among producers could represent a way to overcome this problem. A condition for the effectiveness of the systemic firms integration is the inter-firms consonance. The paper aims at verifying the consonance among farms for their systemic integration feasibility assessment. Few studies on the topic can be found in the academic literature. For this purpose, an exploratory survey in the organic olive oil industry, based on multiple case studies, is presented: data are collected through a web-based survey submitted to a population of 200 firms and analysed by comparing their market positioning with their strategic orientation. The understanding of the systemic integration enhancing factors in the agro-food supply chain, such as the strategic orientation, can help farms in formulating and implementing the strategy of horizontal aggregation among producers, called producers organisation (PO).

Keywords: strategic orientation; extra virgin olive oil; organic olive oil; systemic integration; producer networks; producer organisations; olive oil industry; agro-food supply chains; horizontal aggregation; market positioning; supply chain management; SCM.

DOI: 10.1504/IJASS.2016.079086

International Journal of Applied Systemic Studies, 2016 Vol.6 No.3, pp.223 - 238

Received: 03 Jul 2015
Accepted: 16 Feb 2016

Published online: 12 Sep 2016 *

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