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The organizational arrangement of castor bean family farmers promoted by the Brazilian Biodiesel Program: a competitiveness analysis

Conejero, Marco Antonio, César, Aldara Da Silva, Batista, Angelita Pereira
Energy Policy 2017
biodiesel, castor beans, chemical industry, collective action, cooperatives, farmers, fuel production, interviews, ricin, stakeholders, Brazil
The organization of family farmers into associations or cooperatives gains importance within the biodiesel industry in Brazil. This research evaluates the competitiveness of the castor bean agricultural production sector, organized around the biodiesel agro-industrial system (AIS). This research presents some of the challenges in the way of enjoying the benefits of the National Biodiesel Production and Use Program (PNPB), concerning the sectoral coordination of small castor bean producers in Minas Gerais and Bahia states and theposition of the biodiesel and ricin chemical industries. Desk research, document analysis, and interviews with stakeholders are used to that end. The main results are: the detailing of the institutional environment around the PNPB; the mapping of the biodiesel AIS and ofthe castor bean organizational arrangement promoted via PNPB, as well as their contractual relations. It appears that the organizational arrangements of castor beans (OACB) exist only as a geographical concentration of producers and cooperatives. Although there are transactions, relations are still too fragile for the cooperation and coordination of collective actions. As part of a sectoral strategic agenda, however, there are actions that can be encouraged for building a horizontal coordination among producers.