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Price or relational behaviours? Supplier relationship management in the German dairy industry

Amos Gyau (School of agriculture, Food and Wine, University of Adelaide, Adelaide, Australia)
Achim Spiller (Department of Agricultural Economics and Rural Development, Georg‐August University of Goettingen, Goettingen, Germany)
Christian Wocken (Department of Agricultural Economics and Rural Development, Georg‐August University of Goettingen, Goettingen, Germany)

British Food Journal

ISSN: 0007-070X

Article publication date: 5 July 2011

1739

Abstract

Purpose

The aim of this paper is to determine the relative importance of actual price and behavioural factors for the quality of the business relationship between German dairies and their milk suppliers.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper reports the results of field study involving 209 farmers in Lower Saxony and the northern section of North Rhine‐Westphalia regions in northwest Germany. These regions are the most important milk production centres in Germany.

Findings

The results indicate that, whereas behavioural factors, specifically relationship management practices and price satisfaction, have a positive influence on the quality of the business relationship between the farmers and the dairies, the actual price levels have no influence.

Practical implications

Actual prices paid to the farmers is not the most important factor which influences the quality of their relationship with the dairies but rather behavioural norms such as milk price satisfaction and relational norms. Dairies are advised to enhance price perception through price negotiations and transparency in order to facilitate quality relationship instead of through higher price payment alone.

Originality/value

This study is the first to integrate and compare the actual prices and behavioural variables to determine their relative importance and influence on relationship quality.

Keywords

Citation

Gyau, A., Spiller, A. and Wocken, C. (2011), "Price or relational behaviours? Supplier relationship management in the German dairy industry", British Food Journal, Vol. 113 No. 7, pp. 838-852. https://doi.org/10.1108/00070701111148388

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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