Externalities, institutions and the location choices of shellfish producers: the case of blue mussel farming in the Mont-Saint-Michel Bay (France)

Type Article
Date 2006-12
Language English
Author(s) Mongruel Remi, Thebaud OlivierORCID
Source Aquaculture Economics & Management (1365-7305) (Taylor and Francis), 2006-12 , Vol. 10 , N. 3 , P. 163-181
DOI 10.1080/13657300600985173
Keyword(s) institutional arrangements, location choices, externalities, economic performance indicators, blue mussel farming
Abstract Most marine aquaculture activities remain strongly dependent on coastal ecosystems. In the case of shellfish farming, this dependency is related mainly to water quality and to the various ecological interactions resulting from the dynamics of coastal food webs. Such ecological constraints have influenced the overall evolution of blue mussel farming in the Mont-Saint-Michel Bay, leading producers to negotiate collective arrangements regarding production capacity and techniques and to develop production strategies at the farm level. This article presents an analysis of the location choices of mussel farmers in the Mont-Saint-Michel Bay based on an empirical investigation conducted in 2002. A typology of farms with respect to their land structure is developed in which some farms choose to concentrate their activity in a single part of the bay while others distribute their activity more widely. Determinants of the location choices of each farm category, including distance to port, natural productivity differentials, and predation of mussel stocks, are analyzed. The role of the institutional arrangements allowing mussel farmers to develop these location strategies is also discussed.
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