nep-agr New Economics Papers
on Agricultural Economics
Issue of 2005‒12‒20
fourteen papers chosen by
Angelo Zago
Universita degli Studi di Verona

  1. Consequences of Alternative Formulas for Agricultural Tariff Cuts By Sebastien Jean; David Laborde; Will Martin
  2. Estimation of the Contribution of Child Labour to the Formation of Rural Incomes: An Application to Nepal By Federico Perali; Furio Rosati; Martina Menon
  3. Developments in the Organization and Finance of Public Agricultural Research in the United States, 1988-1999 By Huffman, Wallace
  4. Regulatory Choice between a Label and a Minimum-Quality Standard, The By Marette, Stèphan
  5. Experimental Designs for Environmental Valuation with Choice-Experiments: A Monte-Carlo Investigation By Silvia Ferrini; Riccardo Scarpa
  6. Reconsidering the Environmental Kuznets Curve hypothesis: the trade off between environment and welfare By Nicola Cantore
  7. Identifying the effect of unobserved quality and experts' reviews in the pricing of experience goods : empirical application on Bordeaux wine By Dubois, P.; Nauges, C.
  8. Organizational structure and the endogeneity of cost : cooperatives, for-profit firms and the cost of procurement By Bontems, P.; Fulton, M.
  9. Confirming the price effects of private labels development By Bontemps, C.; Orozco, V.; Réquillart, V.
  10. Heterogeneity of preferences, limited commitment and coalitions : empirical evidence on the limits to risk sharing in rural Pakistan By Dubois, P.
  11. Double informational asymmetry, signaling, and environmental taxes By Manel Antelo
  12. The Geographic Distribution of Disaster Damages across the United States By Jeff Olson; Mark Skidmore
  13. Two-part tariffs versus linear pricing between manufacturers and retailers : empirical tests on differentiated products markets By Bonnet, C.; Dubois, P.; Simioni, M.
  14. Matchmakers in Wine Marketing Channels : The Case of French Wine Brokers WINE BROKERS By Virginie Baritaux; Magali Aubert; Etienne Montaigne; Hervé Remaud

  1. By: Sebastien Jean; David Laborde; Will Martin
    Abstract: This paper assesses the impacts of alternative approaches to liberalizing agricultural market access within the broad guidelines provided by July 2004 Framework Agreement for the Doha Development Agenda. Computations are carried out at the finest level available on an internationally comparable basis, and take into account non-ad valorem tariffs, tariff preferences and the gap between bound and applied duties. Examination of different tiered formulas shows that only formulas that bring about very deep cuts in bound rates will have a substantial impact on applied tariffs and hence on market access. Another key finding is the extraordinary sensitivity of the results to self-selected sensitive and special products.
    Keywords: Doha development agenda; flexibility; sensitive products; bound tariffs; applied tariffs; political economy; agriculture; trade negotiations
    JEL: D58 F13 P17 Q17
    Date: 2005–09
  2. By: Federico Perali; Furio Rosati; Martina Menon
    Abstract: This paper estimates the contribution of child labour to the formation of household income in rural enterprises. The contribution to household income from the employment of children comes either from the employment on-farm at a shadow wage or off-farm in the agricultural or other sectors. The paper uses a cost function with household labour as a quasi-fixed factor in order to estimate the shadow wage for each component of the household labour force. The study also provides an estimate of contribution of child labour to household income in the rural sector, both at the household and national level. A set of simulation also highlight the role that child labour plays in insuring household subsistence and how it does affects income distribution.
    Keywords: Child, Labour, Formation, Rural Incomes
    JEL: D30 I2 J10
    Date: 2004–06
  3. By: Huffman, Wallace
    Abstract: This paper describes major external changes to the U.S. public agricultural research system over 1988-1999; describes the reactions of the public agricultural research system to the external changes, specifying the innovations that have occurred over the last decade; and draws conclusions about the present and future performance of the U.S. research system. The decade of the 1990s brought slow growth to public agricultural research funding. CSREES tried to stimulate greater interests in competitive grant programs. The states have generally resisted this move. A major asymmetry exists in the sharing of transactions costs associated with external peer-reviewed competitive grant programs. This is especially true when the average grant size is small and the average award rate is low.
    Date: 2005–12–09
  4. By: Marette, Stèphan
    Abstract: This paper revisits the issue of the regulatory choice between a mandatory label and a minimum-quality standard. When the cost of regulation is relatively low, we show that the socially optimal choice depends on the producers’ cost structure for complying with regulation and improving quality. Under a marginal cost for improving quality, the mandatory labeling is sufficient for reaching the socially optimal level of quality. Under a fixed cost for improving quality, we show that each instrument or the combination of both instruments may emerge at the equilibrium.
    Keywords: cost of regulation, information, standard.
    Date: 2005–12–12
  5. By: Silvia Ferrini (University of Siena); Riccardo Scarpa (University of
    Abstract: We review the practice of experimental design in the environmental economics literature concerned with choice experiments. We then contrast this with advances in the field of experimental design and present a comparison of statistical efficiency across four different experimental designs evaluated by Monte Carlo experiments. Two different situations are envisaged. First, a correct a priori knowledge of the multinomial logit specification used to derive the design and then an incorrect one. The data generating process is based on estimates from data of a real choice experiment with which preference for rural landscape attributes were studied. Results indicate the D-optimal designs are promising, especially those based on Bayesian algorithms with informative prior. However, if good a priori information is lacking, and if there is strong uncertainty about the real data generating process - conditions which are quite common in environmental valuation - then practitioners might be better off with conventional fractional designs from linear models. Under misspecification, a design of this type produces less biased estimates than its competitors.
    Keywords: logit experimental design; efficiency; Monte Carlo choice experiments; non-market valuation
    JEL: C13 C15 C25 C99 Q26
    Date: 2005–12–13
  6. By: Nicola Cantore (University of York and Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Milan)
    Abstract: Past climate change literature paid great attention to the welfare analysis of international agreements that stabilize emissions over time on the basis of the New Welfare Economics approach claiming “objective” measures of well-being and excluding interpersonal comparisons. In this paper, by using non New Welfare Economics approaches we show that the involvement of developing countries is not a desirable policy option. The implementation of a “Kyoto for ever” scenario including only developed regions could be recommended because improves both environment and welfare also if it does not generate a turning point in the relationship between income and pollution (PIR). The Environmental Kuznets Curve hypothesis (EKC) implies that a bell shaped PIR would induce policy-makers to pursue economic growth in order to overcome the air pollution issue. This normative prescription crucially focuses on the role played by the existence of a turning point in a context where only two sustainability dimensions are important: the economic and the environmental one. Our analysis shows that when we introduce a welfare analysis, policy implications based only on the turning point existence and consequently on the Environmental Kuznets Curve hypothesis could be misleading. In our study a “win-win” policy as the Kyoto Protocol is recommended because the existence of a turning point could be heavily paid in terms of welfare. However results are sensitive to the choice of the welfare measure.
    Keywords: Environmental Kuznets Curve, climate change, welfare, income distribution.
    JEL: H0 H3 I3
    Date: 2005–12
  7. By: Dubois, P.; Nauges, C.
    Abstract: When an experience goods is being released on the market, experts' opinions or grades are supposed to give information about the quality of the good to future customers. However, whether released experts' opinion affects price setting by itself remains an empirical question that seems difficult to answer. Actually, unobserved true quality of the good makes the experts' grades (supposed to be correlated with this quality) necessarily endogenous in any "hedonic" price equation for experience goods. Using panel data on french Bordeaux wine gathering information on prices, characteristics and wine tasters' grades, we propose a structural empirical appoach à la Levinsohn and Petrin (2003) allowing to disentangle the informative value of grades on quality from the sole direct effect of grandes on price. Our empirical results show that wine tasters' grades affect positively price setting of "en primeur" wine (that is, new vintages that have not been tasted by consumers) as well as unobserved wine quality. Finally, the identified wine quality is shown to be correlated with weather conditions at the growing season, an evidence consistent with Ashenfelter's findings about the effect of weather on prices of mature wines. ...French Abstract : Lorsqu'un bien d'expérience est délivré sur le marché, l'opinion des experts est supposée donner de l'information sur la qualité du bien aux futurs consommateurs. Cependant, savoir si l'opinion des experts affecte la formation des prix par elle-même reste une question empirique difficile à répondre. En effet, la vraie qualité inobservée du bien rend l'opinion des experts nécessairement endogène dans une équation de prix hédonique pour des biens d'expérience. En utilisant un panel de données sur les vins de Bordeaux, les auteurs proposent une approche structurelle permettant de séparer la valeur de l'information sur la qualité donnée par les experts de l'effet de la vraie qualité.
    JEL: D82 L15 Q11 C5
    Date: 2005
  8. By: Bontems, P.; Fulton, M.
    Abstract: In this paper, we show formally that cooperatives can possess an informational--and hence cost--advantage compared to For Profit Firms (FPFs). Hence the standard practice of modeling the cooperative and the FPF as having identical cost structures appears to be theoretically unsound. The cooperative cost--and hence production efficiency--advantage is directly linked to the goal alignment between the cooperative and its members, and is influenced by the extent of income redistribution betwen members and the degree of rent seeking that takes place in the organization. When there is no aversion to income inequality, the members produce at their first best levels. However, as aversion to inequality rises, the production profile of the members converges to the production profile generated when the members face an FPF. Regarding rent seeking if the more (less) efficient members are able to get their profits valued more, total output is increased (devreased). As a consequence, consumers may benefit from the lobbying that occurs inside a cooperative where the powerful members are the most efficient agents. ...French Abstract : Les auteurs montrent formellement dans cet article que les coopératives peuvent résoudre des problèmes d'agences internes à moindre coût que les firmes possédées par des investisseurs extérieurs. L'hypothèse standard consistant à retenir les mêmes structures de coûts pour les deux types d'organisation apparaît alors comme étant infondée d'un point de vue théorique. L'avantage de la forme coopérative en terme d'efficience réside dans le plus grand degré de congruence entre le manager et les membres. Cet avantage est également influencé par l'étendue de la redistribution entre membres opérée au sein de la coopérative et la distribution des pouvoirs au sein de la structure. La production de premier rand est obtenue lorsqu'il y a absence d'aversion pour l'inégalité au sein de la coopérative. Si le degré d'aversion pour l'inégalité augmente alors le profil de production converge vers celui optimal au sein d'une firme possédée par des investisseurs extérieurs. En ce qui concerne l'effet de la distribution du pouvoir politique, si les membres les plus (moins) efficaces sont à même d'obtenur une plus grande valorisation collective de leur revenu, alors la production globale est accrue (diminuée). Ainsi, les consommateurs peuvent bénéficier du lobbying interne à la coopérative lorsque les membres les plus puissants et donc les plus susceptibles d'influencer les décisions sont aussi les plus efficients du point de vue de la production.
    JEL: D82 L31 Q1
    Date: 2005
  9. By: Bontemps, C.; Orozco, V.; Réquillart, V.
    Abstract: We study the price response of national brands to the development of private labels. We use monthly data from a consumer survey reporting their purchases for 218 food products. We show that when private labels have a significant effect on national brands prices (144 cases over 218), that is positive (89%). We also show that the increase in the prices of national brand products is explained by a strategy of product differentiation. Finally, price reaction of national brands differs with the type of private labels they are facing. This paper confirms, on a larger number of products, previous empirical results. ...French Abstract : Les auteurs étudient la réponse en prix des producteurs de marques nationales au développement des marques de distributeurs. Ils utilisent des données mensuelles d'achats issues d'un panel de consommateurs, concernant 218 produits alimentaires. Ils montrent que le développement des marques de distributeurs a un effet significatif sur les prix des marques nationales (144 cas sur 218), qui est positif (89%). Ils montrent aussi que l'augmentation des prix des marques nationales est, en partie, expliquée par une stratégie de différenciation des producteurs de marques nationales. Enfin, la réaction en prix des marques nationales est différente suivant le type des marques de distributeurs. Ce papier confirme, sur un plus grand nombre de produits, nos précédents résultats empiriques.
    JEL: L81 Q13 D4
    Date: 2005
  10. By: Dubois, P.
    Abstract: In this paper, we study the determinants of the value of informal risk sharing groups. In particular, we look at the effects of heterogeneity of preferences and of limited commitment constraints that restrict feasible allocations differently if individuals can deviate form risk sharing agreements in coalitions or not. We test impirically several predictable implications in rural Pakistan taking into account the heterogeneity of households' preferences. Our results show that exogenous size of risk sharing groups can be rejected or that only imperfect risk sharing is obtained within the village because of limited commitment and because of the risk of coalition formation that needs to be deterred. ...French Abstract : L'auteur étudie les déterminants de la valeur du partage de risque informel dans un groupe. En particulier, il étudie les effets de l'hétérogénéité des préférences et de l'engagementlimité sur les limites au partage des risques. Plusieurs implications sur des données au Pakistan sont testées, en tenant compte de l'hétérogénéité des préférences des ménages. Les résultats montrent qu'une taille, exogène des groupes de partage de risque peut-être rejetée ou qu'un partage de risque imparfait est obtenu dans le village à cause de contraintes d'engagement limité et à cause du risque de formation de coalitions.
    Date: 2005
  11. By: Manel Antelo (Universidad de Santiago de Compostela)
    Abstract: This paper examines the effect of signaling on environmental taxation when each polluter privately knows whether its production cost is low or high, whereas third parties (i.e. the rival firms and the regulator) have only a subjective perception on such a cost. Consequently, there is both horizontal and vertical asymmetric information, and each polluting firm can strategically manipulate both the competitor and the policymaker's prior cost perceptions. We show that if the policymaker's ecological conscience is sufficiently high, polluters wish to be perceived as low-cost firms and, to this end, they will produce a high output level and they will emit a high emissions level. Therefore, optimal pollution taxes are higher than would be the case if firms' costs were not signaled in such a manner as to force low-cost polluters, in an attempt to distinguish themselves from high-cost polluters (by increasing their output level and their emissions level), to reduce the distortions in their production and also in their emissions levels. By contrast, if the policymaker values environmental quality less than consumption, environmental taxes become negative (a subsidy per unit of pollutant emitted), but each polluting firm continues to attempt to convince the other players (the rival firm and the regulator) that it is a low-cost supplier. In this case, if the quantity produced by each polluter signals its costs, over-subsiding holds as compared to the benchmark case of non-signaling.
    Keywords: Polluting firms, horizontal and vertical asymmetric information, signaling and non-signaling, environmental taxes
    JEL: D82 L13 Q28
    Date: 2005
  12. By: Jeff Olson (Department of Geography, Ohio State University); Mark Skidmore (Department of Economics, University of Wisconsin - Whitewater)
    Abstract: In this paper we examine the geographic distribution of economic damages caused by natural disasters throughout the United States. Some economists have advocated the use of appropriately priced comprehensive natural disaster insurance as a means of disaster mitigation. The presumption implicit in the comprehensive disaster framework is that natural disasters are not uniformly distributed across the nation. While it clear that disasters occur more frequently and cause more damages in some regions than in others, limitations on the availability of and public access to disaster damage data have constrained researchers in their examination of the actual experiences across the states. Which states have the most damages resulting from natural disaster events? The objective of the paper is to compile information on disaster damages from multiple sources and present the spatial distribution of damages across the country. Some of the results are in line with what one might expect. However, we document some surprising results. The research also demonstrates the paucity of data on disaster damages over time and across space, highlighting the need for a systematic and comprehensive single public source of information on disaster damages for all types of natural hazards.
    Date: 2005–08
  13. By: Bonnet, C.; Dubois, P.; Simioni, M.
    Abstract: We present a methodology allowing to introduce manufacturers and retailers vertical conracting in their pricing strategies on a differentiated product market. We consider in particular two types of non linear pricing relationships, one where resale price maintenance is used with two part tariffs contracts and one where no resale price maintenance is allowed in two part tariffs contracts. Our contribution allows to recover price-cost margins from estimates of demand parameters both under linear pricing models and two part tariffs. The methodology allows then to test between different hypothesis on the contracting and pricing relationships between manufacturers and retailers in the supermarket industry using exogenous variables supposed to shift the marginal costs of production and distritution. We apply empirically this method to study the market for retailing bottle water in France. Our empirical evidence shows that manufacturers and retailers use non linear pricing contracts and in particular two part tariffs contracts with resale price maintenance. At last, thanks to the estimation of our structural model, we present some simulations of counterfactual policy experiments like the change of pricing policies from two part tariffs to linear pricing between manufacturers and retailers, or the change of ownership of some products between manufacturers. ...French Abstract : Dans cet article, les auteurs présentent une méthodologie permettant de modéliser des contrats dans les stratégies de fixation des prix des distributeurs et des producteurs sur un marché oû les produits sont différenciés. Notamment, ils considèrent deux types de contrats à tarifs binômes pour modéliser les relations verticales : avec ou sans prix de revente imposés par les producteurs. Ce papier permet de déterminer les marges prix-coût à partir de paramètres estimés de la demande à la fois pour des modèles de double marginalisation et pour des modèles à tarifs binômes. Différentes hypothèses sur les relations entre producteurs et distributeurs sont alors testées en utilisant des variables exogènes supposées faire varier les coûts marginaux de production et de distribution. Les auteurs appliquent empiriquement cette méthode au marché de l'eau plate nature embouteillée en France. Les résultats empiriques montrent que les producteurs et les distributeurs utilisent des contrats à tarifs binômes avec prix de revente imposés. De plus, grâce aux estimations du modèle structurel, les auteurs simulent des changements de propriété des produits entre producteurs et distributeurs ainsi que des changements de la politique de fixation des prix dans les relations verticales.
    JEL: L13 L81 C12 C3
    Date: 2005
  14. By: Virginie Baritaux (UMR MOISA - INRA - Montpellier France); Magali Aubert (UMR MOISA - INRA - Montpellier France); Etienne Montaigne (UMR MOISA - AGRO.M - Montpellier France); Hervé Remaud (UMR MOISA-AGRO.M - Montpellier France)
    Abstract: Wine brokers are wholesale intermediaries. They belong to the category of the matchmaker intermediaries. These middlemen are not well known. Their role is to help buyers and sellers of bulk wine to meet and transact. Assuming that wine merchants appeal to brokers because they reduce transaction costs, we analyze how a broker intervention can reduce search costs, negotiation costs, and monitoring and enforcement costs of a transaction on bulk wine. A data base of contracts on bulk vins de table and vins de pays is used to estimate a logistic model of the probability “broker intervention”.
    Keywords: Broker, Matchmaker, Marketing Channels, Wine, Transaction costs, France
    JEL: L11 L14 L22
    Date: 2005–12–15

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