The rationale of part-time farming: empirical evidence from Norway

Klaus Mittenzwei (Norwegian Institute for Agricultural Economics Research (NILF), Oslo, Norway)
Stefan Mann (Department of Socioeconomics, Federal Research Station Agroscope, Ettenhausen, Switzerland)

International Journal of Social Economics

ISSN: 0306-8293

Publication date: 9 January 2017



Outside farming, pluriactivity is generally considered as undesirable, whereas agricultural economists tend to recommend part-time farming. This contradiction is to be solved. The paper aims to discuss this issue.


Linking tax-payer and statistical farm-level data from Norway, the authors tested how profitable part-time farming is for Norwegian farm households.


The analysis showed that concentrating on either working on-farm or off-farm generates a higher household income than combining the two.

Practical implications

Part-time farming may be a lifestyle decision, but apparently is not economically optimal for most farms.


The contribution solves an apparent contradiction between the discourses inside and outside agriculture.



Mittenzwei, K. and Mann, S. (2017), "The rationale of part-time farming: empirical evidence from Norway", International Journal of Social Economics, Vol. 44 No. 1, pp. 53-59.

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