Agribusiness (2016/2017)

Course code
Name of lecturer
Diego Begalli
Diego Begalli
Number of ECTS credits allocated
Academic sector
Language of instruction
I sem. dal Oct 3, 2016 al Jan 31, 2017.

Lesson timetable

I sem.
Day Time Type Place Note
Tuesday 8:30 AM - 10:30 AM lesson Lecture Hall L  
Wednesday 3:30 PM - 5:30 PM lesson Laboratory Gamma from Nov 9, 2016  to Dec 21, 2016
Wednesday 5:30 PM - 6:30 PM lesson Laboratory Gamma from Nov 30, 2016  to Jan 31, 2017
Friday 8:30 AM - 10:30 AM lesson Lecture Hall L  

Learning outcomes

The course is aimed to offer to students attending the Master Science in Agro-food Biotechnology the basic knowledge of the economics of the food system. Starting from the concepts of Agro-food System and Food Supply Chain, the course develops the methods of analysis of the Agro-food structure and organisation. Special attention is devoted to the analysis of the characteristics and strategies of Italian agro-food system as well as to the mechanisms of vertical coordination between the various stages of the food supply chain. Special focus are developed in relation to the organization of the cooperative system and local food products districts.


Introduction to agribusiness.
The agro-food system and its components.
The food supply chain. Definition. Methodological approaches. Distribution chains. Case studies.
Food consumption. The consumer decision process. The variables that influence the intention to buy. Consumption patterns.
Modern distribution. Distribution formulas. Organizational structure. Strategies. Private labels. Relations between distribution and food industry. Relations between distribution and agriculture.
The food industry. Development strategies. Strategic positioning of the major competitive players.
Coordination mechanisms in the food system. Market coordination: final markets, direct marketing, electronic markets. Vertical integration. Forms of integration: merge and aquisition, contract, cooperative. Individual contracts. Collective contracts.
Local systems and typical products. The information asymmetry. The marks of origin. Economic and social importance of typical products. Case studies.
The cooperative integration. The cooperative firm. Types of cooperatives. The cooperative bodies and their roles. The cooperative organization. Case studies.

Reference books
Author Title Publisher Year ISBN Note
V. Sodano, M. Sassi, A. Marchini, Economia Agroalimentare: Mercati e Politiche Mcgraw-Hill, Milano 2010

Assessment methods and criteria

Oral examination