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Long-Run Trends in the Farm Size Distribution in Israel: The Role of Part-Time Farming

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  • Kimhi, Ayal
  • Tzur, Nitzan

Abstract

This article proposes a nonparametric analysis in which the change in the distribution of farm size between two periods is decomposed into several components, and the contributions of subgroups of farms to this change are analyzed. Using data on Israeli family farms, we analyze the changes in the farm size distribution in two separate time periods that are characterized by very different market conditions, focusing on the different contributions of full-time farms and part-time farms to the overall distributional changes. We find that between 1971 and 1981, a period characterized by stability and prosperity, the farm size distribution has shifted to the right with relatively minor changes in higher moments of the distribution. On the other hand, between 1981 and 1995, a largely unfavorable period to Israeli farmers, the change in the distribution was much more complex. While the overall change in the size distribution of farms was smaller in magnitude than in the earlier period, higher moments of the distribution were not less important than the increase in the mean. Between 1971 and 1981 the contributions of full-time farms and part-time farms to the change in the size distribution are quite similar. Between 1981 and 1995, however, full time farms contributed mostly to the growth in the average farm size, while average farm size among part-time farms actually decreased, and their contribution to the variance of farm size was quantitatively larger.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Department of Agricultural Economics and Management in its series Discussion Papers with number 99217.

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Date of creation: Jan 2011
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Handle: RePEc:ags:huaedp:99217

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Postal: Faculty of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Quality Sciences Hebrew University of Jerusalem, P.O. Box 12, Rehovot 76100
Phone: 08-9481230
Fax: 08-9466267
Web page: http://departments.agri.huji.ac.il/economics/indexe.html
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Keywords: Research Methods/ Statistical Methods;

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  1. Bremmer, Johan & Oude Lansink, Alfons G.J.M. & Olson, Kent D. & Baltussen, Willy H.M. & Huirne, Ruud B.M., 2002. "Analysis of Farm Development in Dutch Agriculture and Horticulture," 13th Congress, Wageningen, The Netherlands, July 7-12, 2002 7025, International Farm Management Association.
  2. Avner Ahituv & Ayal Kimhi, 2006. "Simultaneous estimation of work choices and the level of farm activity using panel data," European Review of Agricultural Economics, Foundation for the European Review of Agricultural Economics, vol. 33(1), pages 49-71, March.
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  11. Huffman, Wallace & Evenson, Robert E., 2001. "Structural Adjustment and Productivity Change in U.S. Agriculture, 1950-82," Staff General Research Papers 5009, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
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  14. Dolev, Yuval & Kimhi, Ayal, 2010. "Do family farms really converge to a uniform size? The role of unobserved farm efficiency," Australian Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society, vol. 54(1), March.
  15. Christopher A. Wolf & Daniel A. Sumner, 2001. "Are Farm Size Distributions Bimodal? Evidence from Kernel Density Estimates of Dairy Farm Size Distributions," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 83(1), pages 77-88.
  16. Upton, Martin & Haworth, Simon, 1987. "The Growth of Farms," European Review of Agricultural Economics, Foundation for the European Review of Agricultural Economics, vol. 14(4), pages 351-66.
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