The democratic and market reforms inaugurated in Russia in the early 1990s marked also the beginning of a spontaneous process shaping a new legal-organisational structure of agricultural producers. The basis for the start of this process was the agricultural reform (de-collectivisation of agriculture) providing for the apportionment of arable land to the farm workers by means of the so-called stakes (some 12 million persons) and for the restructuring of kolkhozes and sovkhozes. The principal tendencies that characterise this process are: firstly, the formation - chiefly on the basis of the former kolkhozes and sovkhozes, of a new organisational-legal structure of agricultural enterprises based on private ownership, secondly, the emergence and development of a new group of agricultural producers (farmers) and, thirdly, the strengthening of an extremely large group of household crofts which have a very long tradition in Russian agriculture. The process is reflected also in the changing structure of land and labour resources and, consequently, in the structure of agricultural production which changes under the influence of the emerging forms of husbandry. The principal tendency in this process is growth in the number of private farms and household crofts and a decline in the number of agricultural enterprises.