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Organic companies’ business models: emerging profiles in Italian bio-districts

Elisa Truant (Department of Management, University of Turin, Turin, Italy)
Laura Broccardo (Department of Management, University of Turin, Turin, Italy)
Adrian Zicari (ESSEC Business School, Singapore)

British Food Journal

ISSN: 0007-070X

Article publication date: 15 July 2019

Issue publication date: 1 August 2019

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the “organic” phenomenon within a sample of companies and try to depict the main business model (BM) features and profiles.

Design/methodology/approach

The methodology used for the current research is twofold: first, a literature analysis has been conducted in order to highlight the gap in the existing literature. Then, the different BM profiles were investigated through a survey questionnaire conducted among a sample of Italian organic companies and organic districts. The evidence from the literature review supported the researchers during the empirical phase.

Findings

From the literature review, it emerged that studies on the BMs of organic companies and organic districts need a deep analysis and a literature gap on this topic has emerged. From the BM point of view, clustering sheds light on proactive companies, which are characterized by a higher level of education among entrepreneurs, greater investments in the business and the sale of products within and outside of the domestic market.

Research limitations/implications

Limitations include the number of answers collected through surveys and the focus on a single country.

Practical implications

The main practical implication focuses on the regulatory bodies that should better understand the BMs characteristics implementing adequate policies for the development of organic companies and districts.

Originality/value

The main practical implication focuses on the regulatory bodies that should better understand the BM characteristics and implement adequate policies for the development of organic companies and districts.

Keywords

Citation

Truant, E., Broccardo, L. and Zicari, A. (2019), "Organic companies’ business models: emerging profiles in Italian bio-districts", British Food Journal, Vol. 121 No. 9, pp. 2067-2085. https://doi.org/10.1108/BFJ-03-2019-0158

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2019, Emerald Publishing Limited