Journal of
Development and Agricultural Economics

  • Abbreviation: J. Dev. Agric. Econ.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2006-9774
  • DOI: 10.5897/JDAE
  • Start Year: 2009
  • Published Articles: 552

Full Length Research Paper

Influence of modern technology on small family-owned farms in the Brazilian savannah region: A case study of a settlement in Mato Grosso do Sul State

Arcelei Lopes Bambil and Olivier Vilpoux*
Catholic University of Campo Grande (UCDB), Mato Grosso do Sul – Brasil.
Email: [email protected]

  •  Accepted: 20 August 2011
  •  Published: 26 September 2011


The Savannah region is the second biggest biome in Brazil after the amazon forest. Today, the savannah is Brazil´s largest region responsible for commodity production. Nevertheless, this production is concentrated around large-scale farmers. Most of the small farmers representing the largest group of producers encounter many problems ranging from low levels of production to income difficulties. The objective of the research was to verify the influence of technology in problems encountered by small farmers installed in the Savannah region. The research has been realized with a case study in a cooperative from the settlement São Manoel, in the Mato Grosso do Sul State, Centre of Brazil. Praxeology, knowledge of how to use technology, has been identified as the most important characteristic to explain the cooperative problems. For annual crops, in fertile soils, technologies can be traditional and therefore the use of modern praxeology is not necessary. In poor soils, typical of the Brazilian savannah, the necessity of modern technology requires the domination of more complex praxeologies. Perennial crops and investments in special structures, such as green houses also require modern technologies and adequate praxeologies, which were not available in the cooperative. The results indicate the importance of extension services and training methods adapted to the technologies used. Otherwise, the small producers of the Brazilian savannah are limited to traditional technologies, useful only for crops with good climate and fertile soil, which represent a small part of the biome, mainly near rivers.


Key words: Technology, familiar agriculture, savannah.