nep-agr New Economics Papers
on Agricultural Economics
Issue of 2017‒02‒26
seventeen papers chosen by
Angelo Zago
Università degli Studi di Verona

  1. Sustainability of farms of natural persons in Bulgaria By Bachev, Hrabrin
  2. The Agricultural Technology Adoption Puzzle: What Can We Learn From Field Experiments? By Alain de JANVRY; Kyle EMERICK; Elisabeth SADOULET; Manzoor DAR
  3. The Stolypin Reform and Agricultural Productivity in Late Imperial Russia By Paul Castaneda Dower; Andrei Markevich
  4. Mitigating Tensions over Land Conversion in Papua, Indonesia By Mochamad Indrawan, Julian Caldecott and Ermayanti
  5. Labor Misallocation and Mass Mobilization: Russian Agriculture during the Great War By Paul Castaneda Dower; Andrei Markevich
  6. Renewable energy, arable land, agriculture, CO2 emissions, and economic growth in Morocco By Ben Jebli, Mehdi; Ben Youssef, Slim
  7. The ecological footprint of early-modern commodities Coefficients of land use per unit of product By Theodoridis, Dimitrios
  8. Estimating the Relative Benefits of Agricultural Growth on the Distribution of Expenditures By Ligon, Ethan; Sadoulet, Elisabeth
  9. Measuring the Effects of Commodity Price Shocks on Asian Economies By INOUE Tomoo; OKIMOTO Tatsuyoshi
  10. Food Security, Structural Transformation, Markets and Government Policy By C. Peter Timmer
  11. Impacts of Large Scale Foreign Land Acquisitions on Rural Households: Evidence from Ethiopia By Emma Aisbett; Giulia Barbanente
  12. Peeling back the onion: Using latent class analysis to uncover heterogeneous responses to stated preference surveys By Hammitt, James; Herrera-Araujo, Daniel
  13. Do Sovereign Wealth Funds Dampen the Negative Effects of Commodity Price Volatility? By Mohaddes, Kamiar; Raissi, Mehdi
  14. Agriculture and Food Global Value Chains in Sub-Saharan Africa: Does bilateral trade policy impact on backward and forward participation? By Jean Baliè; Davide Del Prete; Emiliano Magrini; Pierluigi Montalbano; Silvia Nenci
  15. Can Liberalization of Local Food Marketing Channels Influence Local Economies? A Case Study of West Virginia’s Craft Beer Distribution Laws By Trey Malone; Joshua C. Hall
  16. Socio-ecological assessment for environmental planning in coastal fishery areas: A case study in Brazilian mangroves By Luciana Cavalcanti Maia L.C.M. Santos; Maria M.A. Gasalla; Farid Dahdouh-Guebas; Marisa Dantas M.D. Bitencourt
  17. Markup and Product Differentiation in the German Brewing Sector. By Giannis Karagiannis; Magnus Kellermann; Simon Pröll; Klaus Salhofer

  1. By: Bachev, Hrabrin
    Abstract: The issue of adequate assessment of socio-economic and ecological sustainability of divers agricultural holdings is among most topical academic and practical problems. It is particularly important for smallholder farms accounting for the majority of all farms in the globe. In Bulgaria unregistered farms of Natural Persons account for almost 98% of all farms in the country, cultivate a third of all farmlands, graze 85% of cows, 90% of sheep, and around a third of pigs, and employ almost 93% of workforce in the sectors. This article applies a holistic framework and assesses sustainability of farms of Natural Persons in Bulgaria during current stage of EU CAP implementation. Initially a new governance aspect of farm sustainability is justified and method outlined. After that assessment is made of integral, governance, economic, social, environmental sustainability of farms of Natural Persons of different size, specialization, and location, and comparative sustainability to other type of farms. Finally, directions for further research and amelioration of sustainability assessment practices are suggested. Overall sustainability of Natural Persons in the country is at a good level, with superior levels for environmental and social sustainability, close to the low level governance sustainability, and inferior economic sustainability. Comparative sustainability of holdings is lower than other juridical type. There are great variations in sustainability levels of farms of different kind and location. Share of Natural Persons with good and high sustainability is smaller than other categories of farms and majority of Natural Persons have no comparative advantages in terms of sustainability, and in a middle term will cease to exist.
    Keywords: smallholders sustainability, governance, economic, social, environmental aspects, Bulgaria
    JEL: D2 D23 D24 Q12 Q13 Q18 Q2
    Date: 2017–01
  2. By: Alain de JANVRY (University of California Berkeley); Kyle EMERICK (FERDI); Elisabeth SADOULET (University of California Berkeley); Manzoor DAR (International Rice Research Institute)
    Abstract: The Green Revolution, consisting of using High Yielding Variety (HYV) seeds together with high fertilizer doses, has been widely adopted under irrigated conditions, but generally not in rainfed areas that are prone to stresses like drought and flooding. This puzzling lag in technology adoption is holding back the role of agriculture for development in extensive regions of the world such asSub-Saharan Africa and Eastern India, with high aggregate costs in terms of economic growth and human welfare. Field experiments have been particularly useful in addressing this adoption puzzle. Significant lessons have been learned on the roles of farmer behavior and of mediating factors such as credit, insurance, markets, and policies in constraining adoption. We use experimental field research in Eastern India to show that rainfed agriculture typically suffers from lack of effective supply of suitable HYVs, constraining adoption and resulting in low fertilizer use. Effective supply requires the existence of suitable HYVs (provided by research), the provision of information to farmers about these technologies (provided by extension services and social networks), and their local availability for adoption (provided by private agents in value chains). We consequently argue that solving the adoption puzzle for rainfed areas requires that governments and international donors increase investment in discovery-type agricultural research, support innovations in extension services, and promote the role of private agents in value chains. For donors this implies resolving a collective action problem in the provision of international public goods that remains pervasive.
    Date: 2016–12
  3. By: Paul Castaneda Dower (Florida International University); Andrei Markevich (New Economic School)
    Abstract: We study the effect of improvements in peasants’ land tenure, launched by the 1906 Stolypin reform, on agricultural productivity in late Imperial Russia. The reform allowed peasants to obtain land titles and consolidate separated land strips into single allotments. We find that consolidations increased land productivity. If the reform had been fully implemented, it would have doubled grain production in the empire. We argue that an important factor determining the positive impact on productivity is a decrease in coordination costs, enabling peasants to make independent production decisions from the village commune. In contrast, the titling component of the reform decreased land productivity and we present evidence that transaction costs explain this short-run decline.
    Keywords: land tenure, peasant commune, Stolypin reform, Russia
    JEL: N43 N53 O43 Q15
    Date: 2017–02
  4. By: Mochamad Indrawan, Julian Caldecott and Ermayanti
    Abstract: In the south of the biodiversity-rich Indonesian province of Papua, a large agricultural program is planned for the districts around Merauke, with the ostensible aim of helping to meet Indonesia's food requirements. Questions arise over the scheme's compliance with national laws and sustainability policies, as well as its likely impacts on indigenous livelihoods and biodiversity. It is also contrary to the recent low-carbon development priorities of the provincial and national governments. For the initiative to be consistent with law and policy, therefore, considerably improved planning effort would be needed, taking into account many factors that have so far been ignored.
    Keywords: Papua, sustainable development, low carbon, policy conversion
    Date: 2017–02–16
  5. By: Paul Castaneda Dower (Florida International University); Andrei Markevich (New Economic School)
    Abstract: We exploit a quasi-natural experiment of military draftees in Russia during World War I to examine the effects of a massive, negative labor shock on agricultural production. Employing a novel district-level panel dataset, we find that mass mobilization produces a dramatic decrease in cultivated area. Surprisingly, farms with communal land tenure exhibit greater resilience to the labor shock than private farms. The resilience stems from peasants reallocating labor in favor of the commune because of the increased attractiveness of its nonmarket access to land and social insurance. Our results support an institutional explanation of factor misallocation in agriculture.
    Keywords: factor misallocation; agricultural production; mass mobilization; World War I; Russia
    JEL: D24 N44 N54 O12 O17 O20
    Date: 2017–02
  6. By: Ben Jebli, Mehdi; Ben Youssef, Slim
    Abstract: The autoregressive distributed lag (ARDL) bounds approach to cointegration and Granger causality tests are used to investigate the dynamic short and long-run causality relationships between per capita renewable energy (RE) consumption, carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, real gross domestic product (GDP), agricultural value added (AVA), and arable land use (LUSE) for the case of Morocco during the period 1980-2013. Two models are used: the first with the AVA variable, and the second with the LUSE variable. The Wald test confirms the existence of a long-run relationship between variables for each considered model. Our long-run estimates indicate that an increase in economic growth, agricultural production, and arable land use contribute to increase the use of renewable energy, while a decrease in CO2 emissions increases renewable energy consumption. Granger causality tests reveal the existence of a short-run unidirectional causality running from AVA and from LUSE to RE consumption; a long-run unidirectional causality running from LUSE to RE, and a long-run bidirectional causality between AVA and RE. We recommend that Morocco should continue to encourage renewable energy use because this latter is not in competition with agricultural production for land use, but rather it is a complementary activity.
    Keywords: Autoregressive distributed lag; Granger causality; renewable energy; agricultural value added; arable land use; Morocco.
    JEL: C3 Q1 Q15 Q42 Q54
    Date: 2017–02–01
  7. By: Theodoridis, Dimitrios (Department of Economic History, School of Business, Economics and Law, Göteborg University)
    Abstract: Land availability and overseas trade have been central topics in economic history. The current paper contributes to this literature by setting the empirical foundations necessary for the calculation of the direct ecological footprints of more than eighty traded commodities throughout the 19th and early 20th century. The main focus is placed upon products which were heavily traded by and within the British Empire during this period. Various secondary sources have been reviewed and are critically discussed while the methodological steps that have been followed for the calculation of an acreage conversion factor for each product are analyzed in detail. The data presented here can be useful for researchers examining the importance of ghost acreages and ecological footprint historically but also the role of natural resources and land use in a long term perspective.
    Keywords: ecological footprint; trade; 19th century; ghost acres; Britain; land productivity
    JEL: N01 N50 N70 Q16 Q17
    Date: 2017–02–14
  8. By: Ligon, Ethan; Sadoulet, Elisabeth
    Keywords: Social and Behavioral Sciences, agricultural growth, distribution of expenditures, unbalanced panel dataset, global development
    Date: 2017–02–01
  9. By: INOUE Tomoo; OKIMOTO Tatsuyoshi
    Abstract: Commodity prices have become volatile over the past two decades, and their recent sharp decline has decreased the consumer price index (CPI) inflation rates for most of the economies. While many Asian economies have benefited from low international oil and food prices, the commodity exporters have suffered. Thus, the negative impact on production through the decline of producer prices has attracted considerable attention. Given this situation, policymakers have become increasingly concerned about measuring the magnitude of oil and food price shock diffusion on a nation's various inflationary indicators. This study investigates this problem by using a global vector autoregressive (GVAR) model. Specifically, we examine the impact of a one-time hike in oil and food prices on the general price levels and production for nine Asian countries and 13 other countries, including the United States and the Eurozone. We also analyze the differences of shock propagations in the pre- and post-GFC periods. Results indicate that the increased integration and dependence on exports intensified the Asian region's vulnerability to external shocks.
    Date: 2017–02
  10. By: C. Peter Timmer
    Abstract: Food prices are a key signal about what is happening to food security, and two dimensions are important: their average level (and whether this is rising or falling in the long run) and their volatility. Food price instability slows down economic growth and the structural transformation that is the pathway out of rural poverty. The best approaches to improving food security depend on which global food price regime is likely to drive policy formation between now and 2050. The historical path of structural transformation with falling food prices, leading to a ‘world without agriculture’, is an obvious possibility. But continued financial instability, coupled with the impact of climate change, could lead to a new and uncertain path of rising real costs for food, with a reversal of structural transformation. Management of food policy, and the outlook for sustained poverty reduction, will be radically different depending on which of these global price regimes plays out.
    Keywords: food security, economic development, government policy, market prices, climate change, structural transformation
    Date: 2017–02–16
  11. By: Emma Aisbett; Giulia Barbanente
    Abstract: The impact of large-scale foreign land acquisitions (“landgrabs”) on rural households in developing countries has proven a highly contentious question in public discourse. Similarly, in the academic literature, "evolutionary" theories of property rights and "enclosure" models make diametrically opposed predictions about the impacts on holders of informal property rights of increased demand for land. The current paper uses a multi-method approach to provide much-needed empirical evidence on the impacts of large-scale land acquisitions in Ethiopia. We use basic economic theory to structure evidence from disparate sources, including: a survey of existing qualitative evidence; original legal analysis of specific foreign land-acquisition contracts; and original econometric analysis of new World Bank household survey data. The evidence from all three methods suggests large-scale foreign land acquisitions are associated with losses of land and resource rights for rural households. While there is some compensating evidence of increased household expenditure, it is difficult to say whether this increase is caused by growth in incomes or in implicit prices.
    Keywords: Ethiopia, large-scale land acquisitions, LSMS-ISA, smallholder farmers, coarsened exact matching
    Date: 2016–11
  12. By: Hammitt, James; Herrera-Araujo, Daniel
    Abstract: We develop validity tests for application to stated-preference estimates of WTP to reduce mortality risk, i.e., value per statistical life (VSL), and apply these to data obtained by surveying a representative sample of French adults over the internet. These tests (WTP nearly proportional to risk reduction, insensitive to small differences in baseline risk, increasing in income, and consistent with budget constraints) are satisfied by a conventional single-regression analysis of our data. Using latent class analysis (LCA), we identify important differences between respondents in their consistency with the validity tests and control for much of this heterogeneity. Estimates of VSL from the latent class that is consistent with the validity tests are smaller than estimates from the standard analysis. We estimate mean VSL for adults of about 2 million e and for children (based on parents’ WTP) of about 6 million euros.
    Keywords: Value per Statistical Life, Latent Class Analysis, Paradata, Scope sensitivity,Income elasticity, Pesticides, Children.
    JEL: D03 D64 I18 Q18 Q51
    Date: 2017–02
  13. By: Mohaddes, Kamiar (University of Cambridge); Raissi, Mehdi (International Monetary Fund)
    Abstract: This paper studies the impact of commodity terms of trade (CToT) volatility on economic growth (and its sources) in a sample of 69 commodity-dependent countries, and assesses the role of Sovereign Wealth Funds (SWFs) and quality of institutions in their long-term growth performance. Using annual data over the period 1981-2014, we employ the Cross-Sectionally augmented Autoregressive Distributive Lag (CS-ARDL) methodology for estimation to account for cross-country heterogeneity, cross-sectional dependence, and feedback effects. We find that while CToT volatility exerts a negative impact on economic growth (operating through lower accumulation of physical capital and lower TFP), the average impact is dampened if a country has a SWF and better institutional quality (hence a more stable government expenditure).
    JEL: C23 E32 F43 O13 O40
    Date: 2017–02–01
  14. By: Jean Baliè (FAO); Davide Del Prete (IMT School for advanced studies; FAO); Emiliano Magrini (FAO); Pierluigi Montalbano (Sapienza University; University of Sussex); Silvia Nenci (University of Roma 3)
    Abstract: The most recent literature on international trade highlights the key role of global value chains (GVCs) in structural transformation, development and growth. The common perception is that Africa, unlike most Latin American and Asian countries, has neither been able to intercept the main changes in trade patterns nor enter massively into global production networks. This work provides some insight into this topic. Using the EORA Input-Output Tables, we analyze whether bilateral import tariffs and shifts in trade regimes associated with regional trade agreements affect the backward participation (i.e., the use of foreign inputs for exports) and forward participation (i.e., the use of domestic intermediates in third country exports) of the SSA countries’ agriculture and food GVCs. Our results show that, despite their low world trade shares, GVC participation in SSA economies is increasing over time, mainly upstream as suppliers of unprocessed inputs. Furthermore, we show that the value added demand for SSA agricultural products primarily originates from the EU and emerging countries rather than from regional partners. Finally, by making use of a “gravity-like†identification strategy, we also find evidence that bilateral trade protection significantly affects GVC backward and forward participation in agriculture and food. These results call for a refinement of trade policy priorities in SSA.
    Keywords: global value chains, agro-food activities, multi-region input-output tables, bilateral trade policies, gravity model, Sub-Saharan Africa
    JEL: F15 L23 O11 O55 Q17
    Date: 2017–02
  15. By: Trey Malone (Oklahoma State University, Department of Agricultural Economics); Joshua C. Hall (West Virginia University, Department of Economics)
    Abstract: Over the past decade, local food systems have been identified as having a significant influence on regional economies. Using a recent change in West Virginia’s craft beer distribution laws as a case study, we show that although employment might not experience a statistically significant change due to additional legalized marketing channels, wages did experience a significant increase. Our findings suggest that state economies might benefit from reducing restrictions on small, local producers.
    Keywords: craft beer, economic development, local foods, tourism
    JEL: D04 I18 O12
    Date: 2016–12
  16. By: Luciana Cavalcanti Maia L.C.M. Santos; Maria M.A. Gasalla; Farid Dahdouh-Guebas; Marisa Dantas M.D. Bitencourt
    Abstract: Along the world's (sub) tropics mangroves are important coastal ecosystems supporting small-scale fisheries and human populations, highlighting the need to consider participatory approaches in this ecosystem management. We carried out a socio-ecological assessment to characterize the use and perceptions of local populations at Northeastern Brazil (São Francisco River Estuary) on mangrove fisheries and local development, and pointed out strategies for environmental planning. The questionnaire-based results show that the locals are economically dependent on mangrove fisheries, exploring 12 types of fish, 4 types of crabs, 3 types of mollusks and shrimps. All populations indicated a decrease in the fishery yield, mainly due to a high fishery pressure and shrimp farming. We conclude that strategies pointed out by the locals as creation of an protected area of sustainable use (Extractive Reserve), aided by government support to create a local small-scale fishery processing industry, to cultivate oysters and fish and ecotourism are sustainable alternatives for poverty alleviation and mangrove conservation. These alternatives and the socio-ecological assessment should be a guideline for other mangroves areas worldwide with similar environmental problems and where fishery is the base of economic subsistence, in order to guarantees the long term sustainability of mangrove socio-ecological systems.
    Keywords: Fishery; Management; Mangrove; Sustainability; Traditional populations
    Date: 2017–02–01
  17. By: Giannis Karagiannis (University of Macedonia, Department of Economics); Magnus Kellermann (The Bavarian State Research Center for Agriculture); Simon Pröll (University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences Vienna, Institute of Sustainable Economic Development); Klaus Salhofer (University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences Vienna, Institute of Sustainable Economic Development)
    Abstract: In this paper we provide a method to separate the markup from product differentiation from other sources of market power, i.e. collusive behavior or market intransparency, based on the estimation of a single reduced form equation. We apply this method to a sample of 118 German breweries, since beer is a differentiated product and at the same time the sector has repeatedly been subject to collusive behavior. Our empirical results show that the “general” markup goes beyond the markup from product differentiation, but the latter accounts for most of the deviation of prices from marginal costs. Moreover, typically for a market with monopolistic competition, we observe average costs above marginal costs and, hence, a high markup does not necessarily translate into a high a profit margin.
    Keywords: markup, product differentiation, monopolistic competition, Germany, brewing
    JEL: L13 L66
    Date: 2017–02

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