Impacts of subsidized hybrid seed on indicators of economic well-being among smallholder maize growers in Zambia
AbstractWe test the hypotheses that subsidies on hybrid seed change maize production, total household income, the severity of poverty, and relative deprivation among smallholder maize growers in Zambia. The analysis contributes to the literature by measuring the quantitative effects of seed (as compared to fertilizer) subsidies on indicators of household well-being rather than input demand. We apply a combination of econometric approaches to a nationally representative, balanced panel of smallholder maize-growing households, and invoke the chain rule to generate quantitative estimates of impacts per kg of subsidized seed. Our findings demonstrate that in the initial years of the program, subsidized seed enhanced the well-being of smallholder maize growers according to each indicator, but by small magnitudes. Simple calculations suggest high private and social benefit-cost ratios when benefits are measured in terms of household income, although magnitudes are sensitive to seed price and administrative costs.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Agricultural and Applied Economics Association in its series 2013 Annual Meeting, August 4-6, 2013, Washington, D.C. with number 149546.
Date of creation: May 2013
Date of revision:
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hybrid maize seed; input subsidy programs; poverty; income inequality; Zambia; sub-Saharan Africa; Agricultural and Food Policy; Food Security and Poverty; International Development; Q12; Q18; H20; I38; N57;
Other versions of this item:
- Nicole M. Mason & Melinda Smale, 2013. "Impacts of subsidized hybrid seed on indicators of economic well-being among smallholder maize growers in Zambia," Agricultural Economics, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 44(6), pages 659-670, November.
- Q12 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - Micro Analysis of Farm Firms, Farm Households, and Farm Input Markets
- Q18 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - Agricultural Policy; Food Policy
- H20 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - General
- I38 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Government Programs; Provision and Effects of Welfare Programs
- N57 - Economic History - - Agriculture, Natural Resources, Environment and Extractive Industries - - - Africa; Oceania
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-AFR-2013-06-04 (Africa)
- NEP-AGR-2013-06-04 (Agricultural Economics)
- NEP-ALL-2013-06-04 (All new papers)
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- Smale, Melinda & Moursi, Mourad & Birol, Ekin & De Groote, Hugo, 2013. "Hybrid seed use and diversity of diets among women in smallholder maize: Growing households in Zambia," HarvestPlus Working Papers 12, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
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