"Concentration in agriculture, while not new, is accelerating. That process includes
both vertical coordination (e.g., increases in contract production) and horizontal coordination
(e.g., farm consolidation). One of the potential benefits of increased concentration is increased
efficiency, as cost economies are exploited. The major purpose of this paper is to examine the
causal linkages among agricultural total factor productivity, contracting and consolidation of
the farm sector, and other variables for the period 1978-96. The paper includes a description of
the trends in the use of contracts and other key structural change measures over time."