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Chapter 7 Trade and poverty: changes in farming and community in NAFTA'S first decade

Globalization and the Time–Space Reorganization

ISBN: 978-0-85724-317-1, eISBN: 978-0-85724-318-8

Publication date: 24 February 2011


The effect of trade on poverty is an open question. Although trade may create opportunities in the form of new markets, producers must be able to switch their production and access these markets to reap the benefits from trade. Those producers that cannot change may be stuck trying to sell products in a market with increased competition from imports. In this chapter, we consider which Mexican farmers have been able to adapt to market changes afforded by North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). We find that although some farmers, particularly those with access to outside information through education or technical assistance, have moved out of corn production, a number of both subsistence and market producers have increased the fraction of their land in corn after NAFTA. We also find that market producers respond quite differently from subsistence farmers to agricultural and other infrastructural factors.


Alvarez, P., Barton, J., Baylis, K. and Soto-Gomez, M. (2011), "Chapter 7 Trade and poverty: changes in farming and community in NAFTA'S first decade", Bonanno, A. and Salete Barbosa Cavalcanti, J. (Ed.) Globalization and the Time–Space Reorganization (Research in Rural Sociology and Development, Vol. 17), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Leeds, pp. 205-236.



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