Research Bulletin (Iowa Agriculture and Home Economics Experiment Station)


In no other industry is the interdependence between the consuming household and the business firm so strong as in agriculture. The farm is a complete economic unit by itself. The business and household units are intertwined in the farm with production and consumption taking place in one central spot. Hence limited resources are allocated between the two in accordance with the preferences of the family. The economic problems of a farm exactly parallel those of a national economy and include the three major areas of choice and decision: (1) the allocation of resources or income between current and future consumption, (2) the allocation of limited resources or income in current production and (3) the distribution of current consumption income between different individuals. In reality, the first decision is largely one of allocation in production over time. Problems of production and consumption allocation at the farm level have received little attention in the general body of economic principIes. In general, the economic principles applicable to the business firm have been developed independently of the consumption unit, and the logic of the consuming unit has been developed independently of the business firm. A more realistic approach for agriculture is to consider production and consumption as interdependent units.



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.