Agriculture 1900 up to 1950

Harvest near Grabow, 1917 Harvest near Grabow, 1917

region Mecklenburg

The large farms in Mecklenburg were very productive. They had the highest level of productivity, machinery use and large livestock in the empire.

After 1919 large land holdings amounted to 60% of the total useful area. Around 43% of the rural population also worked in processing businesses such as dairies and distilleries. Through the expropriation of the state farms, the two free states became the largest landowners that leased the land. Mecklenburg-Strelitz had a significant proportion of forest that was used for silviculture.

In September 1945 the provincial and regional authorities issued land reform decrees. 4,007 businesses with 1,073,578 hectares were dispossessed in Mecklenburg in 1950. This led to the creation of 77,178 new farm jobs, around half of which were for refugees and evictees. 258,155 hectares became nationally-owned farms.

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Briefmarke „Junkerland in Bauernhand“, 1945 (Entwurf Herbert Bartholomäus), Bodenreform in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, 1945/46 Stamp marking the land reform in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, 1945/46

region Western Pomerania

By 1912 the number of itinerant workers from Poland in Pomerania has risen to around 42,000 per year. The entire food chain is placed under state control during the First World War.

Agriculture and forestry continue to dominate the regional structures during the Weimar Republic. Large farms own roughly half of the arable land.

Approximately 57% of the population work in rural areas. Over half of the businesses are in debt by 1927 and from 1928 onward are only able to survive due to the 'Eastern Aid Programme'. State- and privately owned enterprises seize unprofitable farms.

The provincial and state authorities in the Soviet occupation zone introduce land reform ordinances in September 1945. By 1950, 4,007 farms with 1,073,578 hectares have been dispossessed in Mecklenburg (including Western Pomerania). The Göhren estate (Woldegk) owned by Ulrich-Wilhelm Graf Schwerin – a member of the Kreisau Circle of 20 July 1944 – was among them. Positions for 77,178 new farmers are created, around half of them for refugees and exiles. 258,155 hectares are assigned to state-owned farms.

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