EXPLORING THE DILEMMAS OF SMALL BUSINESS GROWTH - THE CASE OF RURAL FOOD-PROCESSING MICRO FIRMS
The study discusses the development and growth of rural food-processing micro firms, and whether such firms are growth-oriented and under which conditions they are growth-oriented. The study shows that there are micro firms that are growth-oriented in rural areas. However, rural micro firm owners want to achieve their firm's growth by using their own and the family's resources and capabilities, and by avoiding risks. Furthermore, the study shows that when a small-scale firm wants to grow and seeks new market opportunities, bottlenecks in production begin to hold back the development of the firm. It seems that micro firm owners try to find machinery that is more automated than what they have, but of a size that is suitable for their production and their short-term expansion plans. The position of micro firms in the food sector makes production planning a challenge for them; small firms need to be flexible in production, and at the same time they must pay attention to cost elements. Therefore, production should become more automated and still stay flexible.
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