Handbook of the International Political Economy of Agriculture and Food
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Handbook of the International Political Economy of Agriculture and Food

Edited by Alessandro Bonanno and Lawrence Busch

This book tackles the central question of the political and structural changes and characteristics that govern agriculture and food. Original contributions explore this highly globalized economic sector by analyzing salient geographical regions and substantive topics. Along with chapters that investigate agri-food in North America, Europe, Latin America, Asia and Oceania, the book includes contributions that cover topics such as labor, science and technology, the financialization of agri-food, and supermarkets.
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Chapter 10: An overview of Spanish agriculture in the 21st century

Miren Etxezarreta, Jordi Rosell and Lourdes Viladomiu


In order to understand the changes that have taken place in Spanish agriculture, as with any other economic sector, it is important to consider two aspects beforehand: the objectives towards which it is directed and the perspective adopted by the analyst. The evolution of the agricultural sector can be analyzed from several perspectives and with different objectives in mind: from a business perspective (obtaining a profit for those who have invested their capital); from an economic perspective (obtaining a food supply that enables the sector to match the rest of the economy); or from a social perspective (an active, dynamic, and sustainable rural sector with a population that enjoys a decent standard of living). According to conventional economic theory, all of these objectives would be achieved by market forces automatically and simultaneously. However, it is well known that this is not the case and that these objectives may even be contradictory, hence the importance of knowing the specific objectives behind this process of evolution.

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