The socialist system of agriculture is based on State (public) and cooperative collective farm ownership of the means of production. The system includes collective farms, machine and tractor stations and State farms.
Socialist agriculture plays an important part in the securing of the maximum satisfaction of the constantly growing material and cultural needs of the whole of society. It is the food base, supplying the population with foodstuffs, and the raw materials base for the light and food industries, which produce objects of mass consumption.
“Socialist society is a producers’ and consumers’ association of those who work in industry and agriculture. If, in this association, industry is not linked up with agriculture, which provides raw materials and food and absorbs the products of industry, if industry and agriculture do not thus constitute a single, national-economic whole, there will be no socialism whatever." (Stalin, “Questions and Answers", Works, English edition, Vol. VII, p. 203.)
Industry is the leading element in relation to agriculture. Large-scale highly mechanised agriculture depends to a vast extent on industry, which produces tractors, combine harvesters and other agricultural machines, their spare parts, fuel, mineral fertilisers, chemicals for pest control, and so on. A steady rise in socialist agriculture can be secured only on the basis of a preferentially rapid growth in the output of means of production supplied for agriculture by socialist industry.
At the same time the development of industry and other branches of the national economy depend on an uninterrupted and rapid raising of agricultural production. The increasing of the people’s well-being and the growth of the town population, demand increased output of grain, meat, milk, green vegetables and other agricultural produce. The expansion of the output of manufactured goods is only possible on the basis of a growing output of agricultural raw materials for the various branches of the light and food industries: cotton, flax, wool, sugar-beet, oil crops, and so on.
The socialist system of agriculture creates the possibility of a systematic growth in productivity of agricultural production and an increase in its marketed surplus. The productivity of labour in socialist agriculture in the U.S.S.R. in 1954 was three times as great as the productivity of labour in pre-revolutionary agriculture, which testifies to the great advantages of collective and State farm production.
The marketed output production of agriculture increased, between 1926-7 and 1952-3, in the case of grain from 10.3 million tons to 40.4 millions, of potatoes from 3 million tons to 12.5 millions, of meat (live weight) from 2.4 million tons to 5 millions, of milk from 4.3 million tons to 13.2 millions. Great successes have been achieved in the production of cotton, sugar-beet and some other industrial crops.
But the level of agricultural production achieved in the U.S.S.R. does not correspond to the high technical equipment of agriculture and to the possibilities latent in the socialist system of agriculture and does not yet satisfy the constantly growing requirements of the population as regards foodstuffs, and those of light industry as regards agricultural raw materials. In order to fulfil all the requirements of the population for various foodstuffs and to develop widely the different branches of the light and food-producing industries, it is essential not only rapidly to increase agricultural production as a whole, but also to improve its structure (increasing the relative importance of livestock breeding, of valuable crops, etc.).
This demands above all an increase in grain production. Grain farming is the basis of the whole of agricultural production. In order to solve the problem of livestock breeding as soon as possible, it is essential to provide all stock with grain fodders: maize, barley and oats. The expansion of cotton, flax, sugar-beet and sunflower production, as well as that of other industrial crops, means that bread must be provided for those engaged in raising these crops. Thus the development of all branches of agriculture depends on an increase in grain output.
The all-round satisfaction of the population’s requirements in foodstuffs and the improvement of the structure of its diet also demand further development of stockbreeding and of all other branches of agriculture: potato and other vegetable growing, fruit growing, viticulture, etc. Socialist agriculture has great and still far from exhausted possibilities of ensuring full supplies of agricultural produce for the population and of raw material for industry.
The great successes achieved in the development of heavy industry allowed the Communist Party and the Soviet State to set forth in 1953-4 a programme for a steep rise in all branches of agricultural production and to undertake the practical realisation of this programme. The January, 1955, Plenum of the Central Committee of the C.P.S.U. took the decision to raise the gross yield of grain during the next five or six years to ten milliard poods a year and to double and more than double the output of the main products of animal husbandry. The sources from which the gross yield of grain are to be increased are: raising the crop capacity of all sown areas, reduction in losses in harvesting, reclamation of virgin and fallow land. The task of sharply increasing the production of grain is exceptionally important for the carrying through of the great plans of communist construction. The struggle to extend grain production is a struggle to strengthen the economic might of our homeland and to achieve a further improvement in the well-being of the people.
Raising the gross yield of grain to ten milliard poods a year will enable all demands for grain to be fully met, more substantial reserves to be formed, trade with foreign countries to be extended, and also more than four milliard poods of grain to be set aside for stockbreeding—particularly maize, but also a considerable quantity of bran, oil-cake and other types of fodder. Stockbreeding will be provided with a stable fodder base and will become highly productive, with a great deal of its product available for marketing, and will ensure the supply to the population of the necessary quantity of animal products.
The experience of the advanced collective farms, M.T.S. and State farms shows that this task can be accomplished in a shorter period than was planned.
One of the most important conditions of an increase in all branches of agricultural production is the most complete and all round utilisation of the land as the main means of production in agriculture. Public ownership of the land is an important. factor in reducing the costs of agricultural produce, in steadily raising the material position of the Soviet peasantry.
In pre-revolutionary Russia the poor and middle peasants had about 330 million acres of agricultural land. As a result of the October Socialist Revolution and the victory of the collective farm system the collective farm peasantry in 1937 already had for their use more than 910 million acres of agricultural land, i.e., almost three times as much. At the present time, including the collective farms of the western regions of the Ukrainian S.S.R. and the Belorussian S.S.K, the western districts of the Moldavian S.S.R., and the Baltic Soviet Republics, the collective farm peasantry has for its use 980 million acres of agricultural land, and in all, including forests and other lands not yet used for agriculture, 1,430 million acres of land are secured to the collective farms for their perpetual use. Apart from this, the collective farms have, for long-term use without payment, 445 million acres of the State land fund and the State forest fund, of which 163 million acres are agricultural land.
The State farms have about 170 million acres of agricultural land; subsidiary farms belonging to factories and institutions, and other land users, have more than 46 million acres.
The collective and State farms have huge reserves of unutilised, fertile, virgin and long-fallow lands. The acquisition of these lands offers the possibility of considerably increasing in a very short period the output of agricultural produce.
The economic necessity for the nation of increasing the production of grain and other agricultural products has required the carrying out of large-scale public works for the fullest development of the land wealth of the country. In keeping with the decisions of the February-March, 1954, Plenum of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union “on the further expansion of grain production and on the development of virgin and long-fallow lands", and with subsequent decisions of the Communist Party and the Soviet State, a vast programme has been adopted which provides for the development of virgin and long-fallow lands, mainly in the country’s eastern districts, so that the sown area of grain and other agricultural crops on newly-developed lands should reach 6974 million acres in 1956. The successful fulfilment of this national task made possible even in 1954 and the first half of 1955 the opening-up of 65 million acres of highly fertile virgin and long-fallow lands in collective and State farms.
The large tracts of land secured to each collective and State farm allow the most productive use of tractors, combines and other complex agricultural machines, the introduction of correct crop rotations, work on land improvement, the construction of irrigation and drainage canals, afforestation, etc. The land, Marx pointed out, constantly improves if it is correctly treated. The socialist system affords every possibility of creating a rational system of agriculture which ensures a regular increase in soil fertility and the highest productivity of agricultural output.
A rational system of agriculture presupposes its intensification. Intensification of agriculture means the additional investment of means of production in a given land area and the improvement of agriculture methods, so as to obtain the greatest quantity of produce from each acre under cultivation by reducing the expenditure of labour and resources per unit of production. Intensification presupposes the application of artificial and organic fertilisers, the raising of highly productive breeds of cattle, the application of the latest achievements of agronomic and veterinary science, etc. This is the main line of development for socialist agriculture.
The collective farms are served by State-owned machine and tractor stations, in which are concentrated the most important implements of agricultural production.
The concentration in State hands of the most important means of agricultural production is a great advantage of the collective farm system. Agricultural technique is ceaselessly being perfected. The constant progress of socialist agriculture is unthinkable without this. The creation of numerous machines which are being more and more improved demands large-scale capital investments, which pay for themselves after a number of years. The Soviet State invests in agriculture considerable and ever-growing resources which would be beyond the means of even the largest individual agricultural enterprises.
In 1953 alone expenditure on the development of agriculture provided by the State Budget, and also out of other public funds, amounted to 52 milliard roubles. In 1954 this expenditure increased to 74.4 milliard roubles. In the Budget allocations; expenditure on further strengthening the machine and tractor stations amounted in 1954 to more than 32 milliard roubles.
Machine and tractor stations are the industrial material and technical base of collective farm production, and represent a decisive force in the development of the collective farms. The production link between industry and agriculture is realised through the M.T.S. The socialist production relations between the working class and the collective farm peasantry are expressed in the mutual relations between the machine and tractor stations and the collective farms.
Thanks to the M. T.S., the development of the collective farms takes place on the basis of the highest technique. A high level of mechanisation of collective farm production is the basis on which labour productivity in collective farms is raised. Mechanisation has to an enormous extent lightened the labour of collective farmers and made possible the carrying out of agricultural work in periods which correspond with the rules of agronomic science and the application of the achievements of advanced agricultural technique. The wide use of M.T.S. machines in collective farm production greatly economises labour expenditure in agricultural production.
By the beginning of 1954 the machine and tractor stations had at their disposal more than three-quarters of the total capacity of mechanical prime movers (including electric) in M.T.S. and collective farms. In 1954 more than 80 per cent of the basic field work in collective farms, including almost all the ploughing, was carried out by the M.T.S. The annual labour of 23 million workers less than would have been needed to carry out the same work in conditions of individual peasant holdings was expended on work carried out in 1953 by the M.T.S. with the help of tractors and combines.
“The principal task of the M.T.S.’s is to secure the greatest possible increase in the yields of all crops in the collective farms, to help the latter to increase their socially-owned herd and its productivity and to raise the total output and marketable surplus of crops and livestock in the collective farms they serve." (Resolution of the September, 1953, Plenum of the Central Committee of the C.P.S.U. The C.P.S.U. in Resolutions and Decisions of its Congresses, Conferences and Central Committee meetings, 7th Russian edition, Pt. II, p. 1182.)
The complex mechanisation of all branches of collective farm production—in grain farming, in the raising of technical and fodder crops, in vegetable growing and also in the arduous jobs in the livestock departments of collective farms—is the most important condition for solving this problem. In the M.T.S. and the specialised stations regular cadres of skilled mechanics have been formed—tractor drivers, tractor team leaders, combine operators and operators of other complex agricultural machines. This makes possible the fullest and most productive use of the wealth of complex agricultural machinery available. The M.T.S., as large-scale industrial-type State enterprises serving the collective farms, have the responsibility of acting as guides to a high level of agriculture and organisers of collective farm production. Through the M.T.S. the Soviet State exercises its function as economic guide and organiser in the strengthening of the collective farms. The M.T.S. helps them in the planning of their socialised sector, in the correct organisation of labour, in the training of personnel, in the whole economic, political and cultural life of the Soviet countryside.
Until 1953 the rich and complex machinery in the M.T.S. was entrusted to seasonal collective farm workers, who were allocated by the farms to work in the M.T.S. just for the period of field work. In accordance with the decisions of the September, 1953, Plenum of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, permanent cadres of mechanics were created in the M.T.S. The total number of permanent workers on the strength of the M.T.S. in 1954 was about two million, which included one million tractor drivers, 200,000 tractor team leaders and their assistants, and 240,000 combine operators.
The M.T.S. serve the collective farms on the basis of agreements concluded with them which have the force of law for both sides. The obtaining by the collective farms, served by a given M.T.S., of the greatest quantity of produce and money income per hundred acres of agricultural land with the least possible expenditure of labour and resources per unit of production is the basic economic index of M.T.S. activity. The M.T.S. are responsible for carrying out State deliveries of agricultural produce from the collective farms.
In accordance with the agreements concluded by the M.T.S. with the collective farms, the latter pay for the work done for them by the former in kind (in agricultural produce), for certain work, however, in money. The payment in kind for M. T.S. work is that part of the collective farm’s gross production which reimburses the outlay of the State M.T.S. on the production of collective farm output. The payment in kind embodies in itself past labour, consisting of the expended means of production of the M.T.S., and also the newly-expended labour of the M.T.S. workers, which consists of labour for themselves and labour for society. The rates of payment in kind for M. T.S. work are fixed, but differentiated according to the zones of the country and their economic and natural conditions. For overfulfilment of planned yields of agricultural crops, the M. T.S. receive from the collective farms a definite part of the harvest gathered above plan.
Selling the agricultural produce coming from the collective farms as payment in kind, the State obtains money which is spent on replacing used-up means of production of the M.T.S. and on the wages of M.T.S. workers. Through the sale of agricultural produce supplied as payment in kind the State also obtains a net income which is used to expand existing M.T.S., to construct new M.T.S. and for other public needs.
The establishment of fixed rates of payment in kind is an important condition for the M.T.S. advancing from being financed out of the Budget to economic accounting so that each M.T.S. should spend its resources in keeping with the income it has received. The introduction of economic accounting into the M.T.S. and observance by them of a regime of economy are of great importance for the reduction of the cost per centner of agricultural produce received as payment in kind, fuller and more efficient use of machinery, high-quality and timely repair of machines and careful maintenance of the latter.
The principle of the material interest of workers in the results of their labour is applied in the M.T.S. in particular forms, different from the forms of payment of labour in other State enterprises and in the collective farms. Permanent and seasonal workers in the tractor teams receive payment for their labour in money and in kind, on the basis of piece-rates. Moreover, during the period of field work, payment is reckoned according to the output standards they have kept up and on the basis of prices calculated in work-days. The State, through the M.T.S., pays the permanent and seasonal tractor-team workers for each work-day they perform a guaranteed minimum in kind (grain), the size of the minimum depending on the fulfilment of the planned tasks as regards yields of agricultural crops in the collective farms served.
In addition to this, tractor-team workers receive from the collective farm in which they are working, for the work-days they have earned the difference between the actual payment in grain per work-earned day and the guaranteed minimum: this applies likewise to all other agricultural produce, on the same footing as the collective farmers. During the period of work away from the fields (in repair shops, at work on the mechanical side of the livestock departments, on M.T.S. buildings) the M.T.S. pay their workers a money wage on the basis of piece rates.
The system of payment of M.T.S. workers gives them a material interest in the better use of agricultural technique and in raising collective farm production.
Freed from the necessity of spending large sums on the purchase and rent of land, as well as on the purchase of the most important implements of production, the collective farms are able to use their growing income for the development of their socialised sector. The socialised sector of the collective farm is organised on State land and run with the help of modern machinery, concentrated in the M.T.S. and constituting public property. The means of production belonging to the artel, and the output of the collective farms, constitute co-operative collective farm property.
Since the agricultural artel is an enterprise of co-operative type, the socialised means of production are part of the indivisible fund of the collective farm. The indivisible fund of the collective farm consists of collective farm implements of labour, work and store cattle, buildings, means of transport, subsidiary enterprises, long-term plantations, irrigation works, materials and money allocated for the development of the socialised sector. Cultural buildings and amenities (collective farm clubs, reading-rooms, kindergartens, etc.) also belong to the indivisible fund. The constant growth of indivisible funds is the most important condition for the development of the socialised sector of the collective farms and the increase of collective farm wealth.
The capital investments of the collective farms are used for the construction of farm buildings, livestock accommodation, irrigation and drainage canals, ponds, clearing the land of brushwood, the building of collective farm power stations and other structures. Capital investments of collective farms in their socialised sector, from their own means and with their own labour, excluding expenditure on expanding the herd, amounted to about 40 milliard roubles in 1946-50, and 52 milliard in 1951-4.
Apart from this, the collective farms spent more than 11 milliard roubles in 1946-50 and 6 milliard in 1951-4 on increasing the number of socially-owned cattle and poultry.
The collective farms, as large-scale socialist enterprises, cannot exist and develop from hand to mouth; they require planned guidance of their economy.
The planned development of the socialised sector of the collective farms along a path of steady advance is the basis for the growth of the material and cultural standard of life of the collective farmers. Forming as they do part of the system of socialist economy, the collective farms must by all-round development of their socialist sector increase to an ever-growing extent, their production for the market, in quantities adequate to meet the demand of the towns and industrial centres, foreign trade and the formation of reserves. Long-term planning is carried out in the collective farms, aimed at contributing. to the solution of the national economic tasks by a sharp rise in agricultural production in the shortest possible time, and annual plans are drawn up accordingly.
The point of departure in State planning of collective farm production is the planning of production of surplus agricultural produce which passes out of the collective farms’ control into the disposal of the State.
The surplus (marketable) production of the collective farms grows with the growth of the socialised sector. The planned guidance of agriculture envisages the need for more productive use of the land. The most important economic index of the results of the collective farms’ economic activity is the obtaining of the maximum amount of gross product of agriculture and stockraising per hundred acres of agricultural land—arable, meadow, pasture—and per work-day worked.
The State plan for the development of agriculture lays down the amount of produce of arable and livestock farming to be rendered to the State in the form of compulsory deliveries, payment in kind for the work of the M.T.S., contracting and purchases. It lays down for the M.T.S. the amount of tractor work to be done on the collective farms. The collective farms must plan, with the participation of the M.T.S., a level of agricultural production which will completely ensure the fulfilment of the planned tasks of delivery and sale of produce, both arable and pastoral, to the State, as well as covering the needs of the socialised sector of the collective farms and those of the collective farmers. Thus, the collective farms determine according to their own judgment the size of area to be sown to particular crops, the amount of the yield to be aimed at, the head of cattle by species and the productivity of stockbreeding, and the system of agricultural and veterinary measures to be adopted. The plans for sowing the various crops and the plans for stockbreeding are discussed and decided at general meetings of collective farmers.
This procedure in planning helps to enhance the initiative of the collective farmers in getting the maximum amount of produce from each acre of land in the collective farm’s charge. It also strengthens the responsibility of the collective farms and the M.T.S. in relation to the delivery of agricultural produce in the necessary quantity to the State.
The planning procedure described also has the function of increasing the economic initiative and incentive of the collective farmers and M.T.S. workers in relation to the development of the non-specialised economy of the. collective farms, taking into account the natural and economic conditions of the various parts of the country.
The carrying on of a non-specialised economy is one of the great advantages of socialist agricultural enterprises. A non-specialised economy permits a rational combination of various branches of agricultural production, especially arable and livestock farming, and the obtaining of the maximum amount of produce from each acre. In collective farms which correctly combine (taking into account the natural and technical conditions that exist in the various parts of the country) the production of grain, industrial crops, fodder and vegetables, and stockbreeding, the labour force is employed more fully and evenly through the whole year, higher indices of labour productivity are obtained, and the economy pays better. Financial resources become available to non-specialised farms more regularly during the course of the year, which enables them to find in good time the money for economic measures which they wish to put into effect.
A non-specialised farm does not contradict but presupposes specialised regions and districts of the country and particular farms specialising in branches, crops and kinds of stock. The correct conduct of a socialist agricultural enterprise excludes both the universalism of small peasant economy, in which a variety of crops are cultivated, mostly for the peasant’s own consumption, and the onesided development of capitalist farms, which usually specialise in one crop (monoculture).
The specialisation of socialist agriculture means, first, fuller utilisation of the specific natural and economic conditions of each region and district of the country for planned production of a particular product needed by society (e.g., cotton in the Central Asian Republics of the U.S.S.R.); second, correct combination of the basic and supplementary branches of the economy, especially arable farming and stockraising, grain, technical and vegetable crops; and, third, the production of such agricultural crops and breeding of such types of stock, in accordance with local conditions, as will ensure the maximum amount of high-quality production with the least expenditure of labour and resources per unit.
The planned distribution of agricultural production throughout the country must also conform to this requirement. Any stereotyped distribution of crops or kinds of stock or the application of uniform crop rotations and agrotechnical methods, regardless of the special features of the natural and economic conditions of a district, is contradictory to the principles of rational conduct of planned socialist economy.
The socialised sector of the agricultural artel is conducted on the basis of the collective labour of the collective farmers.
The permanent production team, formed by the collective farm management to work in one branch or another of the socialised sector, is the main form of labour organisation in collective farms.
Production teams exist for field crops, stockbreeding, fodder storage, vegetable growing, fruit farming, building and other purposes.
The field team is allotted, in the fields of the collective farm’s rotation, tracts of land of a size to ensure the highly productive use of tractors, combine harvesters and other M.T.S. machines in carrying out all agricultural work. Draught animals, the necessary agricultural equipment and farm buildings are provided for each field team. Links are formed within the field team for the more productive use of manual labour in cultivating crops which require more arduous effort. Links are directly subordinated to the field teams’ leader. The June, 1954, Plenum of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union recognised that it was necessary, while strengthening the production teams in the collective farms, at the same time to encourage the organisation of links for specially cultivated and industrial crops, and to help them in every way to obtain large harvests on the fields’ for which they were responsible.
Livestock teams are organised for work in the collective farm livestock departments. Usually one department with the stock buildings and means of production necessary for its upkeep is provided for each livestock brigade.
Ensuring the smooth co-operation of M.T.S. and collective farms is an important condition for the most effective use of the complex M.T.S. machinery. This is achieved by linking the work of the M.T.S. tractor team with that of the collective farm’s permanent production teams. Each M.T.S. tractor team serves one particular collective farm team or several teams, for a number of years.
In agreement with the character of co-operative collective farm property, the requirements of the economic law of distribution according to work done is carried out in collective farms by means of the work-day. The work-day is a measure of the expenditure of the labour of collective farmers in the collective farm’s socialised sector, and at the same time determines the share of each collective farmer in the collective farm’s income. The expenditure of the labour of collective farmers in the socialised sector is reckoned in work-days; the collective farm distributes among the collective farmers that part of its income which goes to personal consumption according to the work-days earned.
A standard of output per working day, achievable by a collective farmer working conscientiously, and taking into account the condition of the draught-animals, machines, and the quality of the soil, is fixed for each job on the collective farms. The rate in work-days, depending on the skill required of the worker, the complexity, arduousness and importance of the particular job for the artel, is determined in keeping with the output standard. The fulfilment of the daily standard output on comparatively simple field work is rated at one work-day. All other forms of labour in the collective’ farm are assessed below or above this. In the course of a working day a collective farmer can be credited with one work-day, half a work-day or several work-days, according to the form of labour involved and the degree of fulfilment or overfulfilment of the standard output. Consequently, a work-day is not the same as a working day. The collective farms plan their work-day expenditure by separate branches and agricultural crops. They maintain strict supervision of the correct crediting of work-days according to the work done by each team, link and individual collective farmer.
Thus the work-day takes account of both the quantity and the quality of the collective farmer’s labour in various jobs, and this makes possible the correlation of various types of work in the collective farm. Skilled labour is rated higher in work-days than unskilled, more intensive labour higher than less intensive. The work-day also makes possible the correlation of labour of different productivity in similar jobs. A collective farmer over-fulfilling the output standard is allotted correspondingly more work-days. In the work-day the labour of an individual collective farmer is expressed as part of the total direct social labour in the collective farm. In this way the personal labour of each collective farmer in collective farm production receives its social evaluation. The work-day reflects socialist production relations between the collective farmers within their particular collective farm, and is an important economic instrument for organising collective farm production.
In so far as the existence of two basic forms of socialist production leads to the existence of commodity production and circulation, the collective farms cannot confine themselves to reckoning up the expenditure on collective farm production in terms of work-days. They have their finances: they calculate collective farm output and income in money terms, and accumulate money; payment of workdays in the collective farms takes place not only in kind, but also in cash.
In the work-day are expressed the principles of equality in socialist society: the freeing of all workers from exploitation, the obligation of everyone to work, and the right of everyone to be remunerated for his labour according to its quantity and quality. The work-day secures equal pay for the labour of men and women. The collective farm system has put an end to the age-old economic inequality of the peasant woman. Only in the collective farm has the peasant woman acquired the opportunity of standing on an equal footing with the man.
Thus the work-day is a new economic category, born of the collective farm system.
The output produced in the socialised sector of the artel constitutes group, co-operative collective farm property. At the same time, not only the collective farms, but also the M.T.S., which carry out most important jobs in the collective farm, participate in the creation of collective farm output and income.
The gross production if a collective farm means the entire amount of the agricultural produce and raw material produced in its socialised sector during a year. The size of the value, or of the social costs of production of collective farm production for a given year is determined by the total amount of socially-necessary labour, both living and congealed, embodied in this production, including the expenditure incurred in the previous year towards the harvest of the year in question (opening-up and cultivation of fallow land, sowing of winter crops, first ploughing of ploughlands, etc.).
In connection with the role played by the M.T.S. in collective farm production the labour of industrial workers, expended in producing tractors, combines and other agricultural machines, spare parts for these, fuel, lubricants, etc., forms an ever-increasing share of the value of collective farm production. The share contributed by the skilled labour of the engineering and technical personnel of the M.T.S. is also increasing.
The constituent parts of the value of collective farm production are, first, the value of the used-up means of production of the collective farm and M.T.S.; second, the value of the product for themselves created by the collective farmers and M.T.S. workers; third, the value of the product for society created by the collective farmers and M.T.S. workers.
Owing to the peculiarities of co-operative collective farm property and to the participation of the M.T.S. in the creation of collective farm production, the formation, replacement and distribution of the value of the production of a collective farm takes place in a different way than in a State enterprise, e.g., in a State farm. It is necessary to distinguish the expenditure of labour and resources carried out directly by the M.T.S. from the expenditure of labour and resources carried out directly by the collective farm.
One of the most important indices of the results of socialist management in a given collective farm and the M.T.S. which serves it is the costs of collective farm production. In calculating the costs of collective farm production there must be taken into account the value of the means of production of the collective farm and of the M.T.S. used up per unit of production, and the expenditure of resources on payment for the labour of the collective farmers and the M.T.S. workers.
The value of the M.T.S. means of production used up, the expenses of paying for the labour of the M.T.S. workers, and also the net income created by the M.T.S. workers in assisting collective farm production, are replaced by the agricultural produce which the collective farm hands over to the M.T.S. in the form of payment in kind. This part of collective farm production in kind passes from the collective farms to the State without assuming commodity form, Without any buying and selling. It constitutes part of the so-called extra-rural turnover and is taken into account in calculating the degree to which collective farm production is marketable.
The collective farms make good the means of production they have themselves expended on securing their output, mainly in kind, reproducing them in their socialised sector. Such means of production include seeds, livestock, fodder, organic manure, etc. The collective farms replace a certain part of the expended means of production by purchases from State and co-operative organisations. Such means of production include: vehicles, small-scale equipment, small motors, simple machines, artificial manures, pedigree stock, building materials, etc.
The labour of the collective farmers newly expended on collective farm output creates the gross income of the collective farm. Gross income is the result of the labour of collective farmers for themselves and of their labour for society. That part of the gross collective farm income which is created by labour for themselves (expended by the collective farmers in their socialised sector) forms the personal income o fthe collective farmers, distributed according to work-days. In addition to this, the collective farmers obtain personal income from their subsidiary home plots. That part of the gross income which is created by the labour of collective farmers for society (for the socialised sector of the collective farm and for society as a whole) forms the net income ofthe collective farm.
The size of the net income depends above all on the level of productivity of labour attained. The productivity of labour in agriculture is determined by a variety of conditions. Decisive significance in the raising of the productivity of labour belongs to the mechanisation of agricultural work, fuller and more efficient use of machines and tractors and of the collective farm’s own means of production, correct organisation and payment of labour, the development of socialist emulation, and the introduction into production of the achievements of agronomy and veterinary science and of the experience of advanced people in the field of socialist agriculture. As V.I. Lenin showed, in the last analysis all differences in the economic organisation of agricultural enterprises; their technique and so on, are summed up in the yields obtained. The results of economic activity in the field of stockbreeding find expression in the amount of meat, milk, wool and other animal products obtained.
On the basis of the growth in the productivity of labour, of economy in the expenditure of living and congealed labour per unit of production, the costs of collective farm production must systematically decline. The higher the productivity of labour in collective farm production, the lower the productive expenditure oh means of production and payment of labour per centner of grain, cotton, flax, beet, meat, milk, wool and other forms of agricultural produce, and the better the socialised economy pays. Comparison between the production outlay and the results obtained, expenses and income, observance of a strict regime of economy of embodied and living labour, struggle against every kind of unnecessary and unproductive expenditure, a proper organisation of the financial side, accounts and bookkeeping—these are the conditions necessary for correct leadership of the development of the socialised sectors of the collective farms along the road to further progress. Calculating the outlay of collective farms and M.T.S. on collective farm production is very important for determining the economic profitability of the production of particular products, for planned, rational distribution of agricultural crops and kinds of stock as between parts of the country, and for determining the results of the economic activity of the collective farms and M.T.S., the degree to which they are paying (their profitability).
Collective farm income is divided into income in kind and in money. Collective farmers receive part of the remuneration for their labour in kind (grain, vegetables, fruit, meat, milk, and, so on), the other part in money. The increase in the socialised funds of the collective farms takes place partly in kind (seed, fodder, etc.) and partly (the indivisible fund, etc.) in money. Under conditions of commodity economy the money incomes of the collective farms play a big part in the development of collective farm production and the growth in the welfare of the collective farmers. The money incomes of the collective farmers, are formed by selling their marketable surplus to the State and the co-operatives through the system of State procurement and purchase and also through direct sale to the population on the collective farm market.
A considerable part of collective farm commodity production becomes available to the State as State procurements of agricultural produce, which include compulsory deliveries and contract purchases. State purchases through compulsory deliveries is made in the case of grain crops, livestock produce, potatoes and a number of other vegetable crops. State purchases by means of contract are made predominantly in the case of industrial crops.
The consistent application of the principle of the material interest of collective farms and collective farmers in increasing agricultural output is the basis of the policy of the Communist Party and the Soviet State as regards compulsory and voluntary deliveries of agricultural produce to the State. This is achieved by establishing firm prices for compulsory deliveries and voluntary sales, which ensure the reimbursement of expenditure ,on the production of agricultural produce and the growth of collective farm cash income and also by applying firm quotas of compulsory deliveries for each district.
State procurements in the form of compulsory deliveries of agricultural produce by the collective farms are carried out on the basis of the acreage principle, i.e., in accordance with the quantity of land secured to the collective farm. Each collective farm is obliged to sell to the State as compulsory deliveries a definite quantity of the output of crops per acre of arable, and of livestock produce per acre of ground area. The acreage quotas of compulsory deliveries are permanent. The progressive significance of such a system of compulsory deliveries of agricultural produce lies in the fact that it raises the interest of the collective farmers in developing their socialised cultivation and livestock breeding, and in the fullest use of the socialised land of the collective farm.
With fixed, permanent quotas of compulsory deliveries, the collective farms are assured that, after fulfilling their obligations to the State, they can freely at their own discretion dispose of the collective farm produce.
In accordance with the decisions of the September, 1953, Plenum of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, and the subsequent decisions of the Communist Party and the Soviet State, the incorrect practice, which laid down exaggerated quotas of compulsory deliveries for the more advanced collective farms, and thus reduced the material interest of collective farms and farmers in increasing output, was abolished. Quotas of compulsory deliveries to the State have also been reduced for a number of agricultural products. New fixed district quotas have been laid down for these deliveries, which cal1not be raised by the local authorities.
Compulsory deliveries of agricultural produce by collective farms to the State are not a tax in the economic sense of the word since the State pays for this produce. The Soviet State plans and lays down firm procurement prices for agricultural produce acquired by centralised statutory deliveries. In planning these prices the State takes into account the value of each agricultural product, its significance for the national economy and the economic advantage of its production for the collective farm. At the same time these prices for compulsory deliveries are laid down at a level which ensures the handing over to State funds of part of the collective farm net income to meet the general State needs. State income from the sales of produce received through compulsory deliveries is used for public needs: for the development of socialist industry, which supplies agriculture with machines and fertilisers, on education, on health, etc. For some, agricultural produce the State, in addition to the fixed price, grants cash bonuses and organises a return sale of grain, manufactured goods and foodstuffs. Moreover, some of them are sold at preferential State prices, which are lower than those usually charged.
Apart from compulsory deliveries and contract purchases of industrial crops, the State acquires agricultural produce from collective farms and collective farmers in the form of State purchases, at purchase prices which exceed those paid for compulsory deliveries. In this purchasing of agricultural produce the State carries on return sales to the collective farms and collective farmers of manufactured goods.
Finally, the collective farms sell to the population a certain part of their saleable output on the collective farm market, at prices formed in this market under the influence of supply and demand.
Compulsory deliveries to and voluntary purchases by the State are a most important source of the collective farms’ money income, which is used to supplement the indivisible fund, to pay the work-days of the collective farmers, and for other purposes.
The level of compulsory and voluntary purchase prices is of very great importance in connection with the raising of the material incentive of the collective farms and collective farmers to develop collective farm production. As has been mentioned, the law of value, though not the regulator of socialist production, exercises an influence on the formation of the prices of agricultural products. The prices at which marketable produce is sold have a strong bearing on the state and development of collective farm production and its particular branches. These prices must make good the outlay on production and guarantee a certain degree of profitability. If these requirements of the law of value are ignored, the material incentive of the collective farms and farmers to develop one or other branch of the socialised sector may be undermined. Thus, at the September, 1953, Plenum of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union it was established that the level of compulsory delivery and voluntary sales prices which formerly existed for a number of agricultural products was not stimulating the collective farms and collective farmers to increase their production. The necessity of raising these prices in keeping with the requirements of the law of value arose.
With a view to increasing the personal material interest of collective farmers in a further improvement in agriculture, compulsory delivery and voluntary sale prices were considerably raised, quotas of compulsory deliveries reduced, the share of purchases at the higher purchase prices increased, and the agricultural tax on the personal subsidiary holding of the collective farmers reduced. The growth of the marketable production of agriculture and the increase mentioned above in the prices paid by the State for agricultural produce led to a considerable increase in the money incomes of the collective farms and farmers. They received for their produce delivered and sold to the State, in 1953 12 milliard roubles more, and in 1954 25 milliard roubles more, than in 1952.
The main way to further a great improvement in all branches of agriculture consists in raising the level of collective farm production, increasing gross and marketed output and reducing expenditure per unit of output.
The economic and natural conditions for the formation of differential rent exist in the collective farms. The existence of differential rent in the collective farms is bound up with the fact that, first, the nationalised land, as the property of the whole people, handed over to the collective farms gratis for perpetual use, is used directly by separate collective farms, based on co-operative collective farm ownership, which is of a group character, and second, that under conditions of commodity economy commodities that are produced under different conditions of productivity of labour are sold at the same price. Collective farm lands differ among themselves in fertility, situation and the degree of productive utilisation, which is mainly connected with the extent to which agriculture has been mechanised. In so far as the quantity of the best land is limited, socialist society is compelled to work also the poorer land in order to satisfy its requirements in respect of agricultural produce. The labour of collective farmers, applied in different conditions of production, results in different productivity.
Collective farms with different levels of labour productivity produce a different quantity of agricultural produce per acre. This means that they expend a dissimilar quantity of labour per unit of output.
Collective farms applying their labour on the best land, under the most advantageous conditions of production and sale, create, compared with collective farms working poorer land under less advantageous conditions, additional income. This income in its natural form consists of various agricultural products: grain, cotton, meat, milk, wool, etc. One part of this additional income is expended in kind, the other part is realised in cash.
Since the total output produced by the collective farms is collective farm property, the additional income which is the result of higher productivity of labour, for example, on better, more fertile land, also becomes the property of the individual collective farms.
The additional income of the collective farms realised as money is connected with the peculiarities of price formation in agriculture. The total additional income created in the collective farm and expressed in money form, is the difference between the social production costs (or social value) of the agricultural produce and the individual production costs (or individual value) of that produce. The extent to which this difference is secured by the collective farms depends on the level of prices.
The scarcity of the best land cannot but influence the price level of agricultural produce. The need to ensure that cultivating one crop or another will be profitable, not only in the best but also in the worst production conditions, is taken into account when prices are planned.
The output produced in collective farms in different conditions of labour productivity is realised at the same prices for compulsory deliveries and voluntary sales, for the zone concerned, or at the same prices on the collective farm. market. Consequently, the collective farms with higher labour productivity obtain additional money income.
The differential rent of the collective farms is the additional net income, in kind or in money, created on. the collective farms which have the most fertile, or more conveniently disposed) portions of land, as well as by those which use the land more productively, compared with the collective farms using poorer portions of land or more remote land, or utilising it less productively.
In socialist economy differential rent is fundamentally different from differential rent under capitalism. It is not the consequence of exploitation, but is the result of the collective labour of collective farmers working for themselves and for their socialised sector, as well as the result of the labour of the workers in the M.T.S. which serve the collective farms. In socialist economy it does not assume the form of ground-rent, and it accrues not to a class of large landowners, but to the collective farms, collective farmers and also to the Socialist State.
Two forms of differential rent, first and second, should be distinguished.
Differential Rent I is the additional net income created by collective farms which have been endowed with the best land and also by collective farms situated closer to their points of disposal. Other conditions being equal, at a similar level of mechanisation, with one and the same system of tillage, collective farms which dispose of the best land obtain more produce per acre than collective farms situated on poorer land. In consequence of higher productivity of labour in collective farms having at their disposal the best lands, these collective farms accordingly obtain higher income.
Collective farms situated nearer to railway stations, wharves, State purchasing offices, towns, and other points of disposal expend less. labour and resources on transporting their produce. Therefore expenditure per unit of output in these farms is lower than in collective farms situated at a distance from their points of disposal. Collective farms with these advantages in their situation also obtain additional income.
Differential Rent II is the additional net income created in collective farms maintaining a more intensive socialised sector) as compared with collective farms that maintain a less intensive socialised sector.
Collective farms with a higher level of mechanisation, raising soil fertility by carrying out land improvement, the application of fertilisers, etc., and with a larger quantity of highly productive stock, i.e., maintaining a more intensive economy, obtain greater output per acre of land than collective farms with a less intensive economy. As a consequence of their higher productivity of labour, the intensive economy expends less labour per unit of output and a higher income in. kind and money is obtained. This is an important stimulus for the collective farms to intensify agriculture.
The distribution of differential rent under socialism has the following peculiarities. In so far as differential rent I, received in collective farms, is not connected with additional outlay of means of production and labour, to that extent it must be applied to the needs of the people as a whole. The “Fundamental Law on Socialisation of the Land", signed by V. I. Lenin, declared: “Surplus income received from the natural fertility of better pieces of land and also from the more advantageous location of pieces of land in relation to markets, shall pass to the disposal of the organs of Soviet power, to be used for public needs." (The Agrarian Policy of the Soviet Power, I917-18. Documents and Materials, U.S.S.R. Academy of Sciences, Russian edition, 1954, p. 137.) .
Since differential rent II arises as a result of intensification of agriculture, thanks to additional investment of means of production and labour by the collective farms and M.T.S; in one and the same area of land, it must be distributed between them in proportion to the’ outlay they have made.
Part of the differential rent received by the collective farms goes to develop their socialised sector and to raise the material and cultural standard of life of the collective farmers. Part of differential rent passes into the hands of the State for public requirements, through the following channels. First, it becomes available through payment in kind to the M.T.S., in so far as additional net income created by the labour of the M.T.S. workers is embodied in it, while rates of payment in kind differ considerably as between zones: as well as because when the harvesting plan is overfulfilled the M;T.S. receives part of the harvest collected in excess of plan. Secondly, through the system of compulsory deliveries to the State, since prices for these deliveries presuppose the redistribution of part of the net income of the collective farms for the needs of general State expenditure, while the quota figures for compulsory deliveries of produce by the collective farms to the State vary according to the conditions of production in various districts. Thirdly, in some part through the income tax on collective farms, since the size of the tax depends on the level of collective farm income.
Forms of distribution of output different from those of State enterprises exist in the’ collective farms, in keeping with the special features of co-operative collective farm property.
The collective farms are an inseparable part of socialist national economy. The collective farm peasantry is vitally concerned with the flourishing of the economy and culture of socialist society and in strengthening its might. The State provides the collective farms with great material help, both by selling collective farm production, and also in the all-round development of the culture of the collective farm village. Therefore, the timely fulfilment of their obligations to the State is a most important task of the collective farms.
In accordance with the Statute of the agricultural artel the collective farms sell part of their harvest and livestock products to the State at fixed, planned prices as compulsory deliveries and as contract sales. The collective farms pay the State in kind for work carried out by the M.T.S. Out of the cash income they have obtained the collective farms repay money loans to the State, and, pay interest on them. The collective farms also pay a small income tax, and pay for insuring their property. The timely and complete fulfilment by the collective farms of their obligations to the State ensures the correct combination of the interests of the individual collective farms with the interests of the State and of the whole people.
The social funds of the collective farm, which are created in kind and in cash, are of great significance in securing an uninterrupted rise in collective farm production and the growth of the welfare of the collective farmers.
The social funds, set aside to make good the expenditure of collective farm means of production, take the form of basic seed and fodder funds. As has already been said, a considerable part of the expended collective farm means of production are directly made good out of collective farm production, while some means of production are purchased for cash.
After the replacement of expended means of production, the collective farms use the gross income that remains for social funds of accumulation and consumption, and for distribution among the collective farmers according to workdays earned.
Social funds of accumulation in the collective farm are formed out of net income. The increase of collective farm accumulation funds takes place primarily by annual deductions from money income for the indivisible fund, except for that part which is set aside for depreciation. Apart from this, the direct investments of the labour of collective farmers in erecting farm buildings, in making agricultural equipment for the collective farm’s needs, in constructing ponds and reservoirs, in increasing the herd of socially-owned stock, improving its quality, etc., contribute to the growth of indivisible funds. Part of the net income goes to accumulation in kind. This includes seed and fodder set aside to increase the seed and fodder funds in connection with the expansion of the area under cultivation: the growth of the number of socially-owned stock and the raising of its productivity, as well as insurance funds (seed and fodder) created in case of bad harvests or lack off odder.
Also of great significance for raising the welfare of the collective farmers are the social consumption funds created out of the net income in collective farms— the food fund in case of bad harvests; the assistance fund for the disabled, those temporarily unable to work, for needy families of servicemen, for the upkeep of creches, and for orphans; the cultural fund, i.e., the fund expended on serving the cultural and everyday needs of the collective farm village (training of collective farm personnel, organisation of creches, etc.).
Remuneration of labour in the collective farms is founded on principles which secure the personal material interest of the collective farmers in increasing the production of grain, livestock and other agricultural produce.
After fulfilling all its obligations to the State, and forming the statutory social funds, the collective farm divides all the remaining produce and its cash income between the members of the artel according to work-days earned. Income received by the collective farmers on account of their work-days is not subject to any tax.
The income received from the socialised sector of the artel by each collective farmer depends on two quantities: (1) the number of work-days he or she has earned; (2) the size of remuneration per work-day. The number of workdays earned in the course of a year is determined by the work of each collective farmer. The size of remuneration per work-day, i.e., the quantity of produce and money which a collective farmer receives for one work-day, depends on the work of all the members of the collective farm. The better the collective farm works as a whole, the more successfully its socialised sector develops, the higher is both the total collective farm income and also the size of that part of it which is distributed according to work-days earned. Part of the net income of the collective farm which remains after fulfilment of obligations to the State and the formation of the statutory social funds, also goes for distribution according to work-days. Apart from this, the income of the collective farmers from the socialised sector also increases through the social consumption funds which have been mentioned. All this creates a material interest of each collective farmer in developing the socialised sector of the collective farm.
In order to fulfil more consistently the requirements of the economic law of distribution according to work, a system of labour remuneration has been established in the collective farms under which collective farmers achieving higher production results obtain higher rewards for their labour, compared with collective farmers achieving relatively lower results.
Additional remuneration of labour (in kind or money) for overfulfilment of the plan laid down for teams and links, in respect of crop yields and productivity of socially-owned livestock, is an important means of raising the personal interest of collective farmers in the results of their labour.
For example, collective farmers in the field teams receive as an additional payment, for overfulfilment of the planned yield on the total area of grain crops for which their team is responsible, from a quarter to a half of the grain gathered by the team above that laid down as its planned harvest.
Additional crediting to teams and links of a supplementary number of work-days, for overfulfilment of the planned yield for agricultural crops, and the deduction of a certain part of their work-days for underfulfilment of this plan, are also practised.
Remuneration of the labour of collective farmers working in collective farm livestock departments depends on milk yield, wool clip, birth and rearing of young animals, increase of live weight of store cattle, etc.
Of great importance in raising the material incentive of the individual collective farmers is the practice of regularly giving them advances in cash and in kind during the year, against the payments due to them for work-days.
Thus the personal interests of the collective farmers and the social interests of the collective farm are correctly combined in the work-day and in the system of distributing collective farm income. The measures taken by the Communist Party and the Soviet State to increase the material interest of collective farms and collective farmers in a further advance of agriculture strengthens still more the union of the working class and collective farm peasantry—the foundation of the might of the Socialist State.
Apart from the socialised sector of the collective farm, which is of decisive significance, a subsidiary personal holding of collective farmers near their homes exists in the agricultural artel. In this way the correct combination of the social and personal is also achieved in the artel, with the subordination of the latter to the former. Any violation of the principle of correct combination of the social and personal in collective farms undermines the basis of the agricultural artel, and of the alliance of the working class and the peasantry.
Money income of collective farms rose from 5.7 milliard roubles in 1933 to 20.7 milliard roubles in 1940, to 49.6 milliard roubles in 1953, and to 63.3 milliard roubles in 1954. In addition, the collective farmers obtain money income from their subsidiary holdings near their homes. With the money income obtained from the socialised sector and their personal holdings, collective farmers buy manufactured goods at the planned prices of State and co-operative trade, which are systematically being reduced.
The appearance of the Soviet countryside has fundamentally changed on the basis of the collective farm system. In place of the old village a new one has arisen, with public farm buildings, power-stations, schools, libraries, clubs and children’s creches. The Soviet peasant is a peasant of a new type, possessed of the benefits of science and culture. Wide sections of the Soviet intelligentsia— engineers, doctors, agronomists, veterinary workers, teachers, organisers of large-scale socialist production -have emerged from the ranks of the collective farm peasantry. Many collective farmers have become expert in advanced agricultural technique, have become masters in the art of securing high crop yields and highly productive stockbreeding.
These facts testify to the extensive cultural revolution which has taken place throughout the Soviet countryside, The total number of students in elementary (seven-year), and secondary (ten-year) schools in the countryside increased from 6.1 millions in 191415 to 21.1 million in 1951-2. In 1952 29 million persons were studying in the countryside at all forms of education (including the training, elementary and advanced, of those in mass professions, specialists, and so on). On January 1 1955, there were 275,000 cultural and educational institutions in the countryside: libraries, clubs and cinemas. In the Soviet village not only has obligatory elementary education been given effect, but the task of general seven-year education is being successfully carried out.
The State farms are, by their social and economic nature, the highest form of organisation of socialist agriculture. The State farms are State socialist enterprises producing grain, meat, milk, wool, and various industrial crops. All their means of production, as well as their output, are public property.
The State farms, as the largest agricultural enterprises, have the possibility of using to the utmost modern agricultural technique, applying rational division of labour, economising in expenditure on farm buildings, equipment, etc.
State farms are equipped with modern agricultural machinery, which makes possible the mechanisation of almost all production processes and creates the necessary conditions for achieving high labour productivity. The highest level of mechanisation has been achieved in grain farming. Complex mechanisation of all branches of production is being effected in the State farms. The sizes of State farms are determined by their particular branch of production, the economic and natural conditions of the districts where they are situated, the level of technique achieved and the necessity of all-round and productive utilisation of each acre of land. The most important economic index of the size of a State farm, within the limits of a particular production trend, is the size of its gross and marketable production. The specific sizes of State farms differ in different parts of the country.
The high marketable output of State farms is one of their great advantages. The marketable output of grain in the grain State farms averages about 70 per cent. The State farms supply the State with a considerable quantity of agricultural produce.
The immense possibilities of the State farms, however, are quite insufficiently used. There are still not a few State farms which, as a result of bad guidance, use great tracts of land wastefully, produce little grain, milk, meat or other produce and run their affairs at a loss. Overcoming these faults, and skilfully using the advantages of the State farms as highly mechanised, large-scale socialist enterprises will make it possible sharply to increase output and delivery to the State of agricultural produce in a very short time.
In the development of socialist agriculture in the period of the gradual transition from socialism to communism the part played by the State farms in supplying the country with food-stuffs continues to increase.
The planning procedure for State farm production laid down by the State, determining as it does the amount of marketable produce rendered to the State as the basic index, releases the initiative of the State farm workers to improve production by intensifying it so as to get the greatest possible amount of produce from the land with the least outlay of labour and resources.
The State farms are capable of becoming highly productive, highly profitable farms, acting as an example of the rational organisation of agricultural production, high yields of agricultural crops and productivity of livestock.
Complete and productive utilisation of their land funds is of the greatest significance in raising the profitability .of State farms.
The most rational basic production trend of the State farm, i.e., its specialisation on the production of grain, meat, milk, wool, cotton, flax, or beet, etc., is determined by the natural and economic conditions of the district. For specialised state farms one of these branches is basic. In addition to the basic branches, all-round development of additional and subsidiary branches is required: vegetable growing, fruit growing, viticulture, poultry farming and beekeeping. The degree of development of each additional and subsidiary branch is determined by taking into account the possibility of securing a high marketability and profitability of these branches of the economy.
Narrow specialisation on the production of anyone crop, or the breeding of anyone form of stock, does not afford the opportunity for making productive use of land, leads to losses in farming and harms the State. Highly mixed, varied and well-developed State farm production, while preserving specialisation in the basic branches, ensures the achievement of the maximum quantity of agricultural produce per acre of arable, meadow and pasture. It is especially important that State farms should provide their own seeds for their sown areas, and fodder for all their stock.
Increasing gross and marketed production per acre of agricultural land means the reduction of production costs and the raising of the profitability of the farm. State farms, being large-scale highly mechanised enterprises, can raise agricultural produce with least labour expenditure and supply the country with it at the lowest prices. The reduction of the production costs of State farms is achieved by further mechanisation of production, raising the effective use of the machine and tractor! pool, improved organisation of labour, the application in all branches of State farm production of the achievements of agricultural science and the experience of the best workers, the introduction of complex agronomic and veterinary measures, the struggle against losses and the observance of a regime of economy. All this leads to raising the productivity of labour, which is reflected in increased yields of agricultural crops and productivity of livestock.
State farms work on the basis of economic accounting. The level of profitability of a State farm is determined by the net income it obtains. The net income created in the State farm is the difference between the cost of production and the value of the agricultural output. The net income realised by the State farm is the difference between the cost of production and the price of the agricultural output sold by the State farm to the State or, to a limited extent, sold on the market. Part of the net income created in the State farm is realised by the procurement organisations and in the sale of State farm produce to the population.
With a view to increasing the material interest of State farms in developing production, the State subsidy for State farms which formerly existed was abolished in 1954, and new delivery prices were introduced for grain, oil crops and the basic forms of livestock produce, so as, on the basis of reduced costs, to ensure that each State farm could make a net profit. The State farms deliver the produce of their main brandies of agriculture to the State at delivery points and at fixed delivery prices. The State farms sell the produce of their subsidiary branches, including what is processed within the farm, directly to the consumer at State retail prices. The abolition of the State subsidy to the farms, and their adoption of the method of economic accounting, is a most important economic measure in the sphere of State farm construction, and lays a firm basis for the rational running of their economy.
The net income remaining at the disposal of the State farm, and accumulated in money, is spent on strengthening and. expanding its farming and on improving the cultural and social amenities for State farm workers (children’s institutions, clubs, rest homes and sanatoria, etc.). Special funds are formed for this: the fund for strengthening and expanding the economy of the State farm, the insurance fund, the enterprise fund.
The development of State farm production depends, to an enormous extent, on strengthening socialist forms of labour organisation and the consistent application of the socialist principle of payment according to work done.
The permanent production team is the basic form of labour organisation in the sectors and livestock departments of the State farm. In field cultivation there are tractor field teams which are allotted portions of land in the fields with crop rotation, tractors, combines and other agricultural machines, means of transport, and work equipment. Special links are formed in the team to grow those agricultural crops production of which is inadequately mechanised. In the livestock departments of State farms livestock teams are formed, to which are allotted stock, the equipment necessary for its care, livestock buildings, etc.
The principle of material interest of the State farm workers in raising the yield of agricultural crops, productivity of livestock and profitability of the farm is applied through a system of piece-rates paid in money. Money bonuses are granted for above-plan yields of agricultural crops, for high indices of livestock productivity: milk yield, wool clip, birth and rearing of young animals, etc., Those working at combine-harvesting (combine operators, their assistants, tractor drivers and others) receive, apart from money wages, wages in kind and supplementary grain bonuses in kind. Money bonuses are laid down for leading State farm workers and specialists who fulfil and overfulfil production plans and delivery of produce to the State. The material interest in the results of their labour, both of the State farm as a whole, and also of its individual workers, is a most important condition for the uninterrupted growth and improvement of State farm production.
(1) The socialist system of agriculture, in the form of collective farms, M.T.S., and State farms, is the highest and most progressive form of organisation of agricultural production. Agriculture in socialist society is called on to secure the all-round satisfaction of the population’s requirements in foodstuffs and those of industry in raw material. The raising of labour productivity in socialist agriculture is expressed in the greatest output of produce per acre of agricultural land, with the least expenditure of labour and resources per unit of produce.
(2) Machine and tractor stations are the industrial material and technical base of collective farm production and the support points for guidance of the collective farms by the Socialist State. The all-round raising of the yield of all agricultural crops in collective farms, the securing of an increase in the number of socially-owned stock, while simultaneously raising its productivity, the increasing of gross and marketable output of cultivation of the soil and stockbreeding in the collective farms served—these are the basic tasks of the machine and tractor stations. Machine and tractor stations playa decisive part in developing collective farm production.
(3) The agricultural artel is the only correct form of collective farm in socialist economy. The collective farms, as socialist co-operative enterprises, are run by the collective labour of their members, with the aid of basic means of production owned by the Socialist State, and some means of production owned by the collective farms. In the U.S.S.R. the land occupied by the collective farms has been handed over to them by the State for perpetual use without payment. The Soviet State expends great sums on financing agriculture and satisfying the cultural requirements of the collective farm peasantry.
(4) The socialised sector of the collective farms is the source for the growth of collective farm wealth and the base for the welfare of the collective farm peasantry. In the collective farms the requirements of the economic law of distribution according to work done are met by means of the work-day. The workday is a particular measure of labour and consumption, arising from the collective farm system, which combines the personal, material interest of the collective farmers with the interests of the socialised sector of the collective farm. The consistent realisation of the principle of the personal, material interest of the collective farmers in raising collective farm production is a necessary condition for carrying out a further advance of agriculture.
(5) Large-scale collective farming makes possible a high income. Additional income received from the collective farms situated on the best land, or the most productively used land, forms differential rent. Differential rent of collective farms falls to the collective farms and farmers, but is also transferred to the State.
(6) The produce and money income of the collective farm, in accordance with the Statute of the Agricultural Artel, go to fulfil the collective farm’s obligations to the State, to form its social funds and to remunerate the labour of the collective farmers according to work-days earned. In keeping with the basic economic law of socialism, the collective farm system secures the uninterrupted growth of the material well-being and the cultural standard of life of the collective farm peasantry.
(7) The State farms are very large-scale and highly mechanised State agricultural enterprises, and play an ever-growing part in agricultural production. The State farms work on the basis of economic accounting. The uninterrupted growth of labour productivity and the material interest of the State farms and their workers in the results of their labour—these are the essential conditions for the conversion of all State farms into model, highly productive and profitable enterprises.