Brazilian agriculture has grown enormously during the past three decades. An interesting aspect of this growth is the respective roles of family and non-family farming, and the seeming importance of this distinction to Brazilian agricultural policy, reflected in the existence of separate agencies in Federal Government with responsibility for each sector. The paper presents multivariate and spatial analyses examining the family and non-family farming sectors to try to quantify how different they actually are. It employs factor analysis to compare both sectors (family and non-family farming) by homogeneous micro-region in terms of productivity, degree of mechanization, intensity of labour use, and investment. The results show that both sectors are not structurally different to each other; both have been administrated according to the same broad agricultural policies, both are overwhelmingly market-oriented, and both tend to cleave to regional differences rather than being importantly different to each other.
Bacha, C.J.C.; Stege, A.L. IRIBA Working Paper 14: Spatial differences between family and non-family farming in Brazilian agriculture. International Research Initiative on Brazil and Africa (IRIBA), University of Manchester, Manchester, UK (2014) 40 pp.