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Possible implementation of a virtual platform to improve citrus marketing in Andalusia (southern Spain). Information needs of producers and exporters

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Authors: M.D. García-Brenes, P. Rallo, F.J. Arenas-Arenas, A. Morales-Sillero y M.P. Suárez
Issue: 111-3 (272-289)
Topic: Agricultural Economics
Keywords: Value chain, distribution, price formation, cooperatives, services.

Andalusia is the second largest citrus producer in Spain, and thus, the citrus industry has an extraordinary economic and social importance in the region. However, the citrus value chain comprises a scattered primary sector in contrast to a very concentrated and well organized purchase and distribution sector, as well as a non-transparent market. The aim of this research was to explore the information needs of the different agents in the citrus value chain and to study the possibilities of implementing a virtual platform to share information in order to improve their marketing decisions. Primary sources were used for this work: a survey was conducted among citrus production experts in Andalusia. Survey results were analysed according to the legal nature and the activity of the respondents. The strategic action of implementing an information platform may be feasible since a clear demand for information has been detected from the survey population which represents 65% of the Andalusia citrus production. In addition, a public-private management model was preferred by the respondents to control the platform although the responsibility for it should be private. The majority of respondents would be willing to pay for the services provided by the platform, although some aspects regarding access restrictions service quality and price should be considered.

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