R-5/03 New uses of an agricultural product? A case study of development in an industrial network
This report is a reprint of a thesis in business administration at Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU). It deals with a certain case: how an agricultural resource Norwegian goat milk was used at a certain time (1980s) and how this use changed in the 1990s. The Industrial network approach is applied in order to understand this use and change. The interaction taking place between various actors in an industrial (business) network is emphasized. This interaction affects resources; various resources are over time mutually adapted across organizational borders in order to facilitate certain economic uses. Regarding the case use of cow milk was judged as most important in the network in the 1980s. This had the effect that the various resources in the network were adapted primarily for the utilization of cow milk, while goat milk was handled as a residue. However, in the 1990s driven by some critical actors, among them a goat farmer interactions took place in the network leading to a new view of how goat milk could economically be used. Gradually a number of small changes were made in the way resources were combined facilitating new and better uses of the goat milk. Hence, goat milk changed from a ‘cost’ to a ‘value’ in the network during the actual period. The thesis was made at the Department of Industrial Economics and Technology Management, NTNU. It was financed by Interreg Sverige – Norge.