nep-agr New Economics Papers
on Agricultural Economics
Issue of 2020‒11‒23
fifteen papers chosen by
Angelo Zago
Università degli Studi di Verona

  1. Unveiling cacao agroforestry sustainability through the socio-ecological systems diagnostic framework: the case of four amazonian rural communities in Ecuador By Jilmar Castañeda-Ccori; Anne-Gaël Bilhaut; Armelle Mazé; Juan Fernández-Manjarrés
  2. Beyond the material: knowledge aspects in seed commoning By Stefanie Sievers-Glotzbach; Johannes Euler; · Frison; Nina Gmeiner; · Kliem; Armelle Mazé; Julia Tschersich
  3. Coalition Formation with Border Carbon Adjustment By Schopf, Mark
  4. Agricultural Composition and Labor Productivity By Cesar Blanco; Xavier Raurich
  5. The Regressive Costs of Drinking Water Contaminant Avoidance By Hyde, Kelly
  6. Commoning the seeds: alternative models of collective action and open innovation within French peasant seed groups for recreating local knowledge commons By Armelle Mazé; Aida Calabuig Domenech; Isabelle Goldringer
  7. Double Burden of Malnutrition in India: Decadal Changes among Adult Men and Women By Brinda Viswanathan; Archana AgnihotriAuthor-Workplace-Name: Madras School of Economics, Chennai, India
  8. Farm Product Prices, Redistribution, and the Early U.S. Great Depression By Joshua K. Hausman; Paul W. Rhode; Johannes F. Wieland
  9. Subnational Bipartisanship on Climate Change: Evidence from Surveys of Local and State Policymakers By Lee, Nathan; Stecula, Dominik
  10. Weather Shocks, Agricultural Productivity and Farmer Suicides in India By Sonal Barve; K.S.Kavikumar; Brinda Viswanathan
  11. Restoring cultivated agrobiodiversity: The political ecology of knowledge networks between local peasant seed groups in France By Armelle Mazé; Aida Calabuig Domenech; Isabelle Goldringer
  12. Future-proofing the plastics value chain in Southern Africa By Liako Mofo
  13. Carbon dioxide emissions mitigation strategies’ performance By AGUIR BARGAOUI, Saoussen
  14. Heterogeneous effects of livelihood strategies on household well-being: An analysis using unconditional quantile regression with fixed effects By Tran, Tuyen; Vu, Huong
  15. Assessment of Vulnerability to Persistent Deprivation: Evidence from A Peripheral Pastoralist Population in Ethiopia By Wassie Berhanu

  1. By: Jilmar Castañeda-Ccori (ESE - Ecologie Systématique et Evolution - AgroParisTech - Université Paris-Saclay - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique); Anne-Gaël Bilhaut (IFEA - Institut Français d'Etudes Andines - MEAE - Ministère de l'Europe et des Affaires étrangères - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique); Armelle Mazé (SADAPT - Sciences pour l'Action et le Développement : Activités, Produits, Territoires - AgroParisTech - Université Paris-Saclay - INRAE - Institut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement); Juan Fernández-Manjarrés (ESE - Ecologie Systématique et Evolution - AgroParisTech - Université Paris-Saclay - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)
    Abstract: Cacao cultivation is rapidly increasing in Latin America under the influence of public policies and external markets. In Ecuador, the cultivated surface of high quality cacao trees has doubled in the last 50 years, creating great expectations in neighboring countries. Here, we investigated the social-ecological sustainability of cacao-based agroforestry systems in four rural Amazonian highlands communities in eastern Ecuador, close to the region where cacao was once domesticated. Kichwa-and Shuar-speaking groups were interviewed by adapting Ostrom's institutional diagnostic framework for social-ecological systems. Through a set of specifically created indicator variables, we identified key interactions and outcomes to understand the fragility and the sustainability of those communities. The studied communities were fairly young, with land rights secured less than 30 years ago in most cases. Per-family surfaces were very restricted (typically one hectare) and plots were divided between cash producing crops and their own home food. The small production per household goes through a precarious commercialization by both intermediaries and cooperatives, making the cacao bean production merely sufficient for pocket money. Ties with specialist producers in one community close to the capital has promoted the use of native cacao lines. Elsewhere, improved varieties of high productivity are planted along native trees being commercialized indistinctly. The continuity of these communities currently depend on a reorganization of their demography with parts of the population working elsewhere, as cacao bean production alone will continue to be insufficient, and will compete with their food self-sufficiency.
    Keywords: self-organization,social-ecological systems,agroforestry,amazon highlands
    Date: 2020–07–23
  2. By: Stefanie Sievers-Glotzbach (Department of Business Administration, Economics and Law - University of Oldenburg); Johannes Euler (Alanus University of Arts and Social Sciences); · Frison (Government and Law Research Group, Faculty of Law - UA - University of Antwerp); Nina Gmeiner (Department of Business Administration, Economics and Law - University of Oldenburg); · Kliem (Department of Business Administration, Economics and Law - University of Oldenburg); Armelle Mazé (SADAPT - Sciences pour l'Action et le Développement : Activités, Produits, Territoires - AgroParisTech - Université Paris-Saclay - INRAE - Institut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement); Julia Tschersich (Department of Business Administration, Economics and Law - University of Oldenburg)
    Abstract: Core sustainability issues concerning the governance of seeds revolve around knowledge aspects, such as intellectual property rights over genetic information or the role of traditional knowledge in plant breeding, seed production and seed use. While the importance of knowledge management for efficient and equitable seed governance has been emphasized in the scientific discourse on Seed Commons, knowledge aspects have not yet been comprehensively studied. With this paper, we aim to (i) to analyze the governance of knowledge aspects in both global and local/regional Seed Commons, (ii) to highlight discon-nections in knowledge governance between the local Seed Commons and global governance of plant genetic resources, and (iii) to investigate the contribution of knowledge commoning to environmentally sustainable and culturally adapted food systems. For this purpose, we will analyze knowledge governance by the International Seed Treaty (ITPGRFA) and by two local Seed Commons, a Philippine farmer-led network and a German organic-breeding association. We take the analytical lens of commoning, focusing on social practices rather than specific resources. The main challenges include finding institutional arrangements, which fruitfully integrate aspects from both traditional and scientific knowledge systems, taking into account the complex interrelation between knowledge-related, material and cultural aspects of seeds.
    Keywords: Seed commons,Knowledge governance,Case studies,Plant genetic resources for food and agriculture,Commoning
    Date: 2020–10–26
  3. By: Schopf, Mark
    Abstract: The present paper analyzes the impact of a climate coalition's border carbon adjustment on emissions from commodity production, welfare and the coalition size. The coalition implements border carbon adjustment to reduce carbon leakage and to improve its terms of trade, while the fringe abstains from any trade policy. With symmetric countries, the optimal import tax or export subsidy is positive but smaller than the coalition's implicit emission price. With a linear-quadratic specification, the coalition exports the commodity. Total emissions decrease with the coalition size, and total welfare increases [decreases] with the coalition size if the coalition is large [small]. Then, the reduced climate costs outweigh [are outweighed by] the increased trade distortions. The unique stable coalition consists of three or more countries, including the grand coalition, and raises the welfare of each country compared to the business-as-usual equilibrium. If no [each] country implements a trade policy, the stable coalition consists of two [three] or less countries. Compared to the case in which only the coalition implements border carbon adjustment, the welfare of each country is reduced [if the stable coalition then consists of four or more countries]. All results are derived analytically.
    Keywords: Carbon Leakage,Climate Change,Environmental Policy,Nash Equilibrium,Terms of Trade
    JEL: F13 F18 H23 Q54 Q56 Q58
    Date: 2020
  4. By: Cesar Blanco (Central Bank of Paraguay); Xavier Raurich (Universitat de Barcelona)
    Abstract: Labor productivity differences between developing and developed countries are much larger in agriculture than in non-agriculture. We show that cross-country differences in agricultural composition explain a substantial part of labor productivity differences. To this end, we group agricultural products into two sectors that are differentiated only by capital intensity. As the economy develops and capital accumulates, the price of labor-intensive agricultural goods relative to capital-intensive agricultural goods increases. This price change drives a process of structural change that shifts land and farmers to the capital-intensive sector, increasing labor productivity in agriculture. We illustrate this mechanism using a multisector growth model that generates transitional dynamics consistent with patterns of structural change observed in Brazil and other developing countries, and with cross-country differences in agricultural composition and labor productivity. Finally, we show that taxes and regulations that create a misallocation of inputs within agriculture also reduce the relative labor productivity.
    Keywords: Structural change, Agriculture labor productivity, Capital intensity.
    JEL: O41
    Date: 2019
  5. By: Hyde, Kelly
    Abstract: Up to 45 million Americans in a given year are potentially exposed to contaminated drinking water, increasing their risk of adverse health outcomes. Existing literature has demonstrated that individuals respond to drinking water quality violations by increasing their purchases of bottled water and filtration avoidance, thereby avoiding exposure to contaminants. This paper demonstrates that poorer households, for whom the costs of avoidance comprise a greater share of disposable income, bear disproportionate costs of water quality violations in the United States. Following a health-based water quality violation, poor households' expenditure on nutritious grocery products in a nationally representative panel differentially decreases by approximately $7 per month. This is associated with a decrease of about 1,500 calories per household member per day, placing these individuals at a higher risk of food insecurity. This finding suggests that the indirect costs of drinking water contamination through economic channels exacerbate health disparities associated with poverty.
    Date: 2020
  6. By: Armelle Mazé (SADAPT - Sciences pour l'Action et le Développement : Activités, Produits, Territoires - AgroParisTech - Université Paris-Saclay - INRAE - Institut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement); Aida Calabuig Domenech (SADAPT - Sciences pour l'Action et le Développement : Activités, Produits, Territoires - AgroParisTech - Université Paris-Saclay - INRAE - Institut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement); Isabelle Goldringer (GQE-Le Moulon - Génétique Quantitative et Evolution - Le Moulon (Génétique Végétale) - AgroParisTech - Université Paris-Saclay - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - INRAE - Institut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement)
    Abstract: In this article, we expand the analytical and theoretical foundations of the study of knowledge commons in the context of more classical agrarian commons, such as seed commons. We show that it is possible to overcome a number of criticisms of earlier work by Ostrom (Governing the commons. The evolution of institutions for collective action, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1990) on natural commons and its excludability/rivalry matrix in addressing the inclusive social practices of "commoning", defined as a way of living and acting for the preservation of the commons. Our empirical analysis emphasizes , using the most recent advances in the IAD/SES framework, the distributed and collaborative knowledge governance in a French peasant seed network as a key driver for reintroducing cultivated agrobiodiversity and on-farm seed conservation of ancient and landrace varieties. These inclusive peasant seed groups developed alternative peer-to-peer models of collabora-tive peasant-led community-based breeding and grassroots innovations in the search for more resilient population varieties. Our results highlight the various models of collective action within the network and discuss the organizational tradeoffs of opting out of peasant seed activities and recreating a shared collective knowledge base on the benefits of restoring cultivated agrobiodiversity. It helps us better understand how modern peasant seed groups function as epistemic communities which contributes to envisioning alternative agricultural systems.
    Keywords: IAD/SES,Peer-to-peer production,Participatory plant breeding,Knowledge economy,Innovation,Institutional economics,Seed commons
    Date: 2020–10–26
  7. By: Brinda Viswanathan (Professor, Madras School of Economics); Archana AgnihotriAuthor-Workplace-Name: Madras School of Economics, Chennai, India
    Abstract: The recent COVID-19 pandemic brings to the fore a high fatality rate amongst those with comorbidities of diabetes and hypertension that is often associated with obesity, while it also exposing the vulnerabilities among the less nourished population due to the infection and economic lockdown. An increasing number of developing countries like India have both undernourished people and overnourished individuals posing a huge public health challenge. In these contexts, the study here analyses the decadal changes in double burden of malnutrition among adult men and women in India based on NFHS-3 and NFHS-4 data. Undernutrition is assessed by the thinness and overnutrition by overweight and obesity using Asian cut-off values for BMI. By 2015-16 the gender gaps in malnutrition have closed in, than it was in 2005-06 perhaps due to an increase in sample size for men. Undernutrition rates have declined in the past decade but are close to 20 percent or more in the population segments of 20-29 years, rural areas, among the poorest and poor asset quintiles, those with less than 5 years of schooling and in the central and eastern regions of India. The worrisome feature is that the increases in overnutrition rates have replaced the decline in undernutrition rates more than the increases in normal nutrition rates resulting in its widespread increase across all parts of country with 50 percent or more among the richest asset quintile, 15 or more years of schooling and more urbanized states of India. The silver lining is that overnutrition rates have declined marginally among those with 18 or more years of schooling in 2015-16. To address the double burden of malnutrition, the way forward would be to harness the large diversity in India‟s food systems with the assistance of local governments and communities and nudging the individuals to a healthy diet and physical exercises using India‟s varied fare of traditional and modern options-this could also be in sync with the ongoing call for localness and selfreliance.
    Keywords: Malnutrition, Double Burden, BMI, Health Insurance, Hygiene
    JEL: I11 I18 I20 J18 O18
  8. By: Joshua K. Hausman; Paul W. Rhode; Johannes F. Wieland
    Abstract: We argue that falling farm product prices, incomes, and spending may explain 10-30 percent of the 1930 U.S. output decline. Crop prices collapsed, reducing farmers' incomes. And across U.S. states and Ohio counties, auto sales fell most in crop-growing areas. The large spending response may be explained by farmers' indebtedness. Reasonable assumptions about the marginal propensity to spend of farmers relative to nonfarmers and the pass-through of farm prices to retail prices imply that the collapse of farm product prices in 1930 was a powerful propagation mechanism worsening the Depression.
    JEL: E32 E65 N12 N52 Q11 Q12
    Date: 2020–11
  9. By: Lee, Nathan; Stecula, Dominik (University of Pennsylvania)
    Abstract: While the U.S. Congress has repeatedly failed to pass national legislation to address climate change over the years, there has been much more progress among state and local governments. But is this progress on climate change policy at the subnational level merely a reflection of the dominance of the Democratic party in certain regions of the country, or does it reflect successful bipartisan action? In this essay, we present novel evidence from two surveys of subnational policymakers, conducted in 2015 and 2017, to demonstrate that there is widespread bipartisan agreement among Republican and Democrat policymakers at the subnational level about (1) the existence of global warming and (2) what to do about it. Specifically, a majority in both parties believe global warming is happening and support the use of renewable energy mandates—rather than cap-and-trade, carbon tax, or emissions standards—to address the problem.
    Date: 2020–11–02
  10. By: Sonal Barve (Research Intern, Reserve Bank of India); K.S.Kavikumar (Professor, Madras School of Economics); Brinda Viswanathan (Professor, Madras School of Economics)
    Abstract: There are several reasons for farmer depression leading sometimes to the extreme measure of committing suicide. Globalization, commercialization, modernisation, erratic climatic conditions, individual expectations, contagion and government policies are some of the reasons attributed to farmer‘s suicides. This study examines linkages between weather shock induced changes in agricultural productivity and farmer‘s suicides in India using fixed effects panel data model with 25 Indian states and 14 years (1996-2009). Estimates from single equation model show no direct effect of weather shocks on farmer suicides while a two-equation specification – one for count of farmer suicides with endogenous agricultural variable and an agricultural equation with weather shocks – yields useful insights. The results from first stage estimation as expected suggest that (low) rainfall shock and high temperature shock adversely affect crop yield per hectare, while regions with higher share of irrigated area are able to counter to some extent the adverse effects of weather shocks. The negative binomial regression model for farmer suicide includes predicted yield along with one-period lag of farmer suicides and state‘s suicide rates to capture the contagion effect. The results show that contagion effects are strong on farmer‘s suicides while predicted crop yield has negative and significant influence indicating that farmer suicides are indirectly associated with weather shocks via the changes in agricultural productivity
    Keywords: : Farmer Suicide; Weather Shocks; Agricultural Productivity;Contagion Effect
    JEL: Q54 O13 D19 O10
    Date: 2019–12
  11. By: Armelle Mazé (SADAPT - Sciences pour l'Action et le Développement : Activités, Produits, Territoires - AgroParisTech - Université Paris-Saclay - INRAE - Institut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement); Aida Calabuig Domenech (SADAPT - Sciences pour l'Action et le Développement : Activités, Produits, Territoires - AgroParisTech - Université Paris-Saclay - INRAE - Institut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement); Isabelle Goldringer (GQE-Le Moulon - Génétique Quantitative et Evolution - Le Moulon (Génétique Végétale) - AgroParisTech - Université Paris-Saclay - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - INRAE - Institut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement)
    Abstract: This article, using an institutional and political ecological perspective, analyses the role of knowledge networks supporting peasant seed groups in France. These groups promote a dynamic approach to agrobiodiversity restoration , developing new models of collaborative "peer-to-peer genetics" and distributed participatory breeding. Our analysis focuses here on the small grain cereal participatory breeding group. Based on detailed qualitative surveys and a network formalization, our study provides a better understanding of how these peasant seed groups self-organized and of how their horizontal and distributed network structure favors the dynamics of collective learning and knowledge spillovers. Further directions for policy making are discussed in support of more resilient plant breeding and agrobiodiversity restoration in European agricultural landscapes.
    Keywords: IAD/SESF,Social-ecological fit theory,Institutional economics,Peer-to-peer production,Participatory breeding,Community-based conservation,Seed Commons
    Date: 2021–01
  12. By: Liako Mofo
    Abstract: Plastics are ubiquitous across the region and play an important role in multiple industries. Most plastic products are based on a value chain that is grounded in petroleum refining, posing an environmental challenge. Plastic manufacturing in South Africa suffers from the high cost of polymers as inputs. Mozambique is endowed with large natural gas deposits.
    Keywords: feedstocks, polymers, plastic, Input, Prices, Regional value chains, Production
    Date: 2020
  13. By: AGUIR BARGAOUI, Saoussen
    Abstract: The climate change matter is due to Green House Gas Emissions produced essentially by CO2 emissions. To overcome this problem, decision markers developed several policies among them the adoption of energy efficient measures and the development of renewable energies. Using a panel data analysis, this paper tries to investigate the impact of adoption of such solutions on emissions levels for 161 countries during the period 1985-2014. Estimation results demonstrate that the magnitude of emissions reduction is more important for energy efficiency and that the role of renewable energy still insufficient yet. Furthermore, we proved that non-renewable energy, income per capita and population growth are destructive facts of environmental quality.
    Keywords: renewable energy, non-renewable energy, panel data, energy efficiency, carbon dioxide emissions
    JEL: Q20 Q30 Q42 Q51 Q56
    Date: 2019
  14. By: Tran, Tuyen; Vu, Huong
    Abstract: Using a household panel dataset for the 2008-2016 period, we analyze the heterogeneous effects of livelihood change on household well-being in rural Vietnam. We use an unconditional quantile regression (UQR) model with fixed effects to control for unobservable time-invariant household characteristics. We find that when a fixed-effects estimator is employed, households switching from a crop livelihood to any non-crop livelihood (e.g., livestock, wage-earning, nonfarm or private transfer livelihoods) increase their per capita income and food consumption. However, the results from the UQR with fixed effects reveal a significant variation in the effect of such a switch in livelihood across various quantiles of well-being distribution, with a larger effect for poorer households. The income effect, however, tends to decline with higher quantiles and even turns negative with a switch to a wage-earning or public transfer livelihood for the better off. Notably, our study confirms the advantage for the poor of changing livelihood from crop to non-crop activities in rural Vietnam. Our research results also suggest that a mean regression approach, that often assumes a homogeneous/mean effect of livelihoods on well-being, may miss some heterogeneity that is useful to researchers and policy makers.
    Keywords: Cluster analysis; fixed effects; food consumption; livelihood; unconditional quantile regression
    JEL: J1 J11 O1
    Date: 2019–12–15
  15. By: Wassie Berhanu (Addis Ababa University, Ethiopia)
    Date: 2019

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