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University of Wisconsin. College of Agriculture. Dept. of Agricultural Economics / Cooperation principles and practices: the application of cooperation to the assembling, processing and marketing of farm products, to the purchase of farm supplies and consumers' goods and to credit and insurance
([1937])

VI. Cooperation in Denmark,   pp. 48-59 PDF (3.5 MB)


Page 53


in England and other countries. The first federated selling agency of these
co-
operative creameries was organized in 1889 but it failed in 1909 through
in-
efficient management and an organization plan that was not truly cooperative.
But this did not deter the Danish farmers from again organizing a federation
for the cooperative selling of their butter; and this time they saw that
it was
organized on a truly cooperative basis and secured competent management.
Today a large part of the butter from the 1,402 cooperative creameries in
Denmark is marketed cooperatively through federations owned and controlled
by farmers through their cooperative creameries. The cooperative assembling,
manufacturing and merchandising of dairy products in Denmark has not only
resulted in the dairymen becoming acquainted with the particular tastes and
demands of the distant consumer, but Danish farmers have also adjusted their
supply as well as grade and quality to meet consumer demands. For instance,
after cooperative marketing had won the interest of dairy farmers in the
eighties, they soon recognized the future economies that might be realized
by
having a steady flow of dairy products go to market the year round. This
may
sound academic to American farmers, but nevertheless cooperation has in-
fluenced Danish farmers to adjust production to meet consumer demands as
to
regularity of supply throughout the year. They did this by developing winter
dairying. To do this meant a radical change in the management of their crops
as well as of the dairy herd. More attention was given to the production
of
roots, such as mangels and swedes and the importation of grains and oil cake
for winter feeding.
     Cooperative Swine Packing Plants-The swine industry ranks next in im-
portance to the dairy industry in Danish agriculture. Hog production has
become an important part of Danish agriculture as a result of the develop-
ment of dairying which makes available large quantities of skimmilk for feed-
ing pigs. This is supplemented by the importation of some grains for feeding.
    The supply of skimmilk returned to the farm is uniform throughout the
year because of uniform milk production and this in turn has resulted in
uni-
form bacon production. In order to provide the greatest economy in the util-
ization of this skimmilk the farmer has adjusted his pig breeding with the
same regulation as is found in the dairy industry. This dependability in
the
regularity of supply of Danish bacon in the British markets, as well as
standardization and quality, is fundamental in the explanation of the premium
prices for Danish bacon and the enviable position Danish products enjoy with
British consumers.
    One of the outstanding features in the cooperative development in Danish
agriculture is the close hook-up between marketing and production of farm
products. There is perhaps no phase of Danish cooperative agriculture where
this relationship between marketing and production is clearer than in the
swine industry.
    Danish farmers have found that in order to put the best bacon on the
world's markets and get premium prices, they must have something more than
scientific treatment in the packing plants. Consequently, Danish farmers
pro-
ceed on the theory that to produce and put into the market good bacon they
must go back to the pig and induce the farmer to breed and feed a pig that
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