Farm house in Tata
Courtesy Sam and Sarah Stulberg
Small-scale producers--individuals or small groups who
household plots or operated small farms--concentrated more
labor-intensive output or activities in which the risks of
investment were to be assumed by those doing the work. In
late 1980s, Hungary had three types of small-scale farming
approximately 623,000 household plots of cooperative
about 792,000 small auxiliary farms of nonagricultural or
state-farm employees, and a few private farms.
percent of the population participated in the small-scale
agriculture sector. The combined contribution of household
and auxiliary and private farms to gross agricultural
31.5 percent in 1975 and 31.3 percent in 1986. Successful
integration of small-scale farming into the agricultural
kept overall production levels high.
The government imposed few restrictions on the sale of
in the small-scale farming sector, and supply and demand
determined prices in a free market. Thus, producers had a
incentive to work hard and produce more. Before the
cooperatives were hostile to household producers. In the
1980s, however, officials proclaimed that private
farming was a permanent component of agriculture under
The central government encouraged cooperatives to assist
with household plots to boost production by providing
transport, machinery, advice, and marketing assistance.
producers also qualified for subsidies, tax breaks, loans,
discount prices for machinery and agricultural chemicals.
Regulations limited the size of household plots to 0.6
of cropland and 0.23 hectares of vineyard or orchard per
The government abandoned earlier limits on livestock.
housewives, dependents, and others performed most of the
household plots and small-scale farms. Their labor
about 2.3 billion man-hours annually and outstripped the
number of man-hours worked in large-scale farming.
Data as of September 1989