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State agricultural procurement.

The term zagotovka refers to the process through which agricultural products (e.g., grain) were procured by the Soviet state, usually from collective farms (kolkhozes) in the form of compulsory deliveries (obyazatelnye postavki ) at low prices set by the state. The procurement process was important in that the underpinning of the Soviet strategy of industrialization was the extraction of grain and other agricultural products from the countryside for use as a source of domestic food and as a means to finance industrialization through export. Moreover, beginning under Lenin during the period of War Communism, when forced requisitioning (prodrazverstka ) was introduced, the role of the state in the production, acquisition, and distribution of agricultural products increased, especially after the collectivization of agriculture in the late 1920s.

In addition to the earlier use of forced requisitioning and the subsequent introduction of compulsory deliveries extracted from collective farms, deliveries were also made by state farms (sdacha sovkhozov ), payments in kind (naturoplata ) were required for the services of the Machine Tractor Stations (MTS), and taxes in kind (prodnalog ) were levied.

The mechanisms of procurement introduced by the Soviet state served, in part, to eliminate the market of the New Economic Policy (NEP) of the 1920s in order to organize the interaction between the agricultural and the industrial (urban) sector. Moreover, as state controls replaced the NEP market, the terms of trade between the countryside and the urban industrial sector could increasingly be dictated by the state.

See also: agriculture; economic growth, soviet; industrialization, soviet


Gregory, Paul R., and Stuart, Robert C. (2001). Russian and Soviet Economic Performance and Structure, 7th ed. New York: Addison Wesley Longman.

Volin, Lazar. (1970). A Century of Russian Agriculture. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

Robert C. Stuart

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