Resilience of family farming 1984–2014: Case studies from two sheep/beef hill country districts of New Zealand
In this analysis, the resilience of family farmers is investigated in two hill country districts of New Zealand (Central Hawkes Bay and Waitomo District) by following the experiences of a sample of 119 sheep/beef producers through two snapshots of their circumstances taken three decades apart. The famers and their spouses were first interviewed in 1984 prior to the removal of state subsidies and other assistance. In 2012–2013, 94 of the farmers (or their successors) were interviewed again. During the period under investigation, they had coped with economic shocks, natural disasters (particularly major droughts) and for some, personal tragedies. The focus of the study is on the economic viability of the family farms in the face of a range of hazardous and adverse events, and how their owners (and families) are adapting and responding to global and local economic and social changes, and the natural disasters which are a normal backdrop to farming.
Publisher: New Zealand Geographical Society
Keywords: Resilience, rural, sheep/beef farming, economic shock, farm ownership, debt, labour.
Research Type: Journal Article