nep-agr New Economics Papers
on Agricultural Economics
Issue of 2019‒10‒28
eight papers chosen by

  1. Challenges of Ensuring Food and Nutritional Security in Bihar By Singh, K M; Singh, Pushpa
  2. Policies for encouraging healthier food choices By Céline Giner; Jonathan Brooks
  3. Farmers’ Food Price Volatility and Nigeria’s Growth Enhancement Support Scheme By Joseph I. Uduji; Elda N. Okolo-Obasi; Simplice A. Asongu
  4. Ecosystems and Human Health: The Local Benefits of Forest Cover in Indonesia By Garg, Teevrat
  5. Feed Thy Neighbour: how Social Ties shape Spillover Effects of Cash Transfers on Food Security and Nutrition By Alessandro Carraro; Lucia Ferrone
  6. What to Expect When It Gets Hotter: The Impacts of Prenatal Exposure to Extreme Heat on Maternal and Infant Health By Kim, Jiyoon; Lee, Ajin; Rossin-Slater, Maya
  7. Reordering international trade: what will it cost? By Rasa Stasiukynaite
  8. National happiness and Environment quality in Africa. By Noubissi Domguia, Edmond; POUMIE, Boker

  1. By: Singh, K M; Singh, Pushpa
    Abstract: Ensuring food and nutrition security is a big challenge for India, given its huge population and high levels of poverty and malnutrition. Malnutrition among children is prevalent in almost all the states in India but Child malnutrition is a critical problem in Bihar, where the prevalence of underweight children is far worse than the Indian average and higher than any country in the world The level of agricultural performance or income have a strong and significant negative relationship with indices of under-nutrition among adults and children, a result suggesting that improvement of agricultural productivity can be a powerful tool to reduce under-nutrition across the vast majority of the population. The data from NFHS III reveals that nearly 50 per cent of children below 5 years of age are underweight and 20-35 per cent is stunted in the above states. Similarly, around 35 per cent or more of adult men and women of 15-49 years of age are found to be ‘thin’ in these states. MS Swaminathan Research Foundation (MSSRF, 2008) classified various Indian states based on composite index of food insecurity and found that the eastern states such as Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand fell under the category of ‘very high’ food insecurity, while Bihar and Odisha were classified under ‘high’ food insecurity. The efficacy of Public Distribution System for distribution of rice, wheat, sugar etc and a responsibility of both State and central Government is crucial in addition access to sanitation facilities and women’s literacy are also strong factors affecting malnutrition. Access to healthcare for women and child-care practices, in particular breast- feeding within 1 hour after birth, are other important determinants of malnutrition among adults and children. Malnutrition is a multidimensional problem that requires multisectoral interventions. However, improvements in agriculture alone cannot be effective in combating malnutrition if several other mediating factors are not in place. Interventions to improve education, health, sanitation and household infrastructure, and care and feeding practices are critical. Innovative strategies that integrate agriculture and nutrition programs stand a better chance of combating the malnutrition problem.
    Keywords: Food Security, malnutrition, healthcare, underweight, Sanitation, agricultural productivity.
    JEL: I1 I15 O13
    Date: 2018–09
  2. By: Céline Giner; Jonathan Brooks
    Abstract: What is the role of government policies in encouraging healthier food choices to fight the current overweight and obesity epidemics. This report examines the evidence base on the health implications of unhealthy diets and its associated burden on health systems. It takes stock of current knowledge on the effectiveness of policy instruments and proposes a four-track policy approach to encourage healthier food choices that is consistent with wider objectives for the food and agriculture sector. This policy approach includes demand side public interventions, voluntary collaboration with the food industry at the supply-demand interface, firmer regulations when public-private incentives are misaligned, and fiscal measures. An important insight from this report is that effective policies require a robust evidence base, which in turn requires effective data systems. The Annex takes stock of how well developed food data systems are currently across a range of OECD countries and provides some recommendations on how to move forward.
    Keywords: data systems, food chain, food choices, health policies, obesity, overweight
    JEL: Q18 I18 C90 M38
    Date: 2019–10–28
  3. By: Joseph I. Uduji (University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nigeria); Elda N. Okolo-Obasi (University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nigeria); Simplice A. Asongu (Yaoundé, Cameroon)
    Abstract: The prices of food in Nigeria have become considerably higher and more volatile since 2012. The aim of this research was to ascertain factors affecting farmers’ involvement in the growth enhancement support programme (GESS) in the country. We ascertained the effect of the GESS on the handiness of market information and agricultural inputs that impact on price volatility at farm gate level. In number, 600 rural farmers were sampled across the six geopolitical zones of Nigeria. Results obtained from the use of a bivariate probit model show that farmers relied on the GESS for resolving food price volatility by making available the food market information and agricultural inputs that cut down the incidence and degree of panic-compelled price increment in Nigeria. The findings suggested the need to enhance the GESS in line with the agricultural transformation agenda (ATA) by reducing the hindrances mostly connected to the use of mobile phones, and how far the registration and collection centers are.
    Keywords: Agricultural transformation agenda, bivariate probit model, food price volatility, growth enhancement support scheme, rural farmers, Nigeria
    JEL: O13 Q10 N27
    Date: 2019–01
  4. By: Garg, Teevrat (University of California, San Diego)
    Abstract: This paper documents the effect of primary forest cover loss on increased incidence of malaria. The evidence is consistent with an ecological response. I show that land use change, anti-malarial programs or migration cannot explain the effect of primary forest cover loss on increased malarial incidence. Falsification tests reveal that the effect is specific to malaria, with forest cover having no discernible effect on other diseases with a disease ecology different from that of malaria. Back-of-the-envelope calculations indicate that the morbidity-related malaria-reducing local benefits of primary forests are at least $1-$2 per hectare.
    Keywords: deforestation, malaria
    JEL: Q53 O13 Q56 Q57 Q20
    Date: 2019–10
  5. By: Alessandro Carraro; Lucia Ferrone
    Abstract: Economic development in Sub Saharan African countries is strongly tied to households’ ability to cope with exogenous events affecting their well-being. Using data from the Lesotho Child Grant Program dataset we provide evidence on whether households’ food security and nutrition are influenced by the presence of a particular network structure, and if there is any spill-over effect of the program on ineligible households living in treated villages. We take advantage of information on money and in-kind transfers to build a set of indicators representing quantitatively and qualitatively the network architecture of each household. We find relevant spill-over effects of the CGP on the food security and nutrition of ineligible households living in treated villages and embedded in a social network.
    Keywords: Cash Transfers, Informal Networks, Randomized Control Trial Experiment, Food and Nutrition Security, Lesotho
    JEL: I31 O12
    Date: 2019
  6. By: Kim, Jiyoon (Elon University); Lee, Ajin (Michigan State University); Rossin-Slater, Maya (Stanford University)
    Abstract: We use temperature variation within narrowly-defined geographic and demographic cells to show that prenatal exposure to extreme heat increases the risk of maternal hospitalization during pregnancy, and that this effect is larger for black than for white mothers. At childbirth, heat-exposed mothers are more likely to have hypertension and have longer hospital stays. For infants, fetal exposure to extreme heat leads to a higher likelihood of dehydration at birth and hospital readmission in the first year of life. Our results provide new estimates of the health costs of climate change and identify environmental drivers of the black-white maternal health gap.
    Keywords: extreme heat, maternal health, infant health
    JEL: I14 I18 Q54
    Date: 2019–10
  7. By: Rasa Stasiukynaite (Bank of Lithuania)
    Abstract: This paper overviews early research which has gone into the possible effects of the recent tensions in international trade. We have witnessed the increase and the promises of future increase in tariffs, in the case of the new trade policy of the US, and the promises of the future increase in the non-tariff barriers (possibly even tariffs) in the UK’s decision to leave the EU. The focus in the research is mostly on trade policy and on the results, insights, and conclusions, while the discussion on the econometric specification or estimation of the models is out of scope.
    Keywords: international trade, tariffs, gains from trade, protectionism, trade policy, Brexit
    Date: 2019–10–15
  8. By: Noubissi Domguia, Edmond; POUMIE, Boker
    Abstract: Using Ordinary Least Squares, the Generalized Method of Moments and Estimate fixed-effect panel threshold model, this paper analyses the effect of environment on happiness in a panel of 30 African countries over the period 2006-2014. We find that environment quality affects happiness. The linear model shows that actually the degradation of environment increase happiness. However, the Estimate fixed-effect panel threshold model concludes that the relation between happiness and Greenhouse Gas are not a linear but quadratic. The estimation of quadratic equation revealed that this relationship takes the form of an inverted U. These results mean that in the long run environment negatively affects the happiness of people in Africa. Thus, the effect of environmental quality on happiness in Africa depends on the level of Greenhouse Gas emissions and the level of income per capita.
    Keywords: National happiness, Environment quality, Africa
    JEL: I31 O15
    Date: 2019–10–16

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