Consumer, Producer and State Relations within the Multiple Scales of the Eastern Ontario Egg Industry: Exposing Scalar Relations and Neoliberal Tensions

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Carroll, Deborah Tafara Cavanagh




This research evaluates relationships between consumers, producers and the state within eastern Ontario’s multi-scalar egg industry. Comparative case studies of three producers, Burnbrae Farms, Reinink Family Farm and Covenant Farm, reveal distinctly scalar production, marketing, and communication practices within the industry. The findings challenge the dichotomy of large versus small scales, revealing mutually beneficial multi-scalar partnerships. The research also evaluates the power of consumers and the state in shaping the industry. Surveys of egg consumers reveal demand for alternative production. However, consumers face barriers to agency, including lack of knowledge and a tendency to outsource their ethics. Policy analysis reveals supply management, Canada’s alternative regulatory system, protects many consumer and producer interests by challenging conventional globalized agri-food production and protecting (to an extent) small-scale, alternative producers. However, international neoliberalization processes threaten Canada’s supply management systems. Therefore, the industry must evolve to enhance consumer and producer support for the system.


Public and Social Welfare
Economics - Agricultural




Carleton University

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