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The Value of Plant Disease Early-Warning Systems: A Case Study of USDA's Soybean Rust Coordinated Framework

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Author Info

  • Roberts, Michael J.
  • Schimmelpfennig, David E.
  • Ashley, Elizabeth
  • Livingston, Michael J.
  • Ash, Mark
  • Vasavada, Utpal

Abstract

Early-warning systems for plant diseases are valuable when the systems provide timely forecasts that farmers can use to inform their pest management decisions. To evaluate the value of the systems, this study examines, as a case study, USDA’s coordinated framework for soybean rust surveillance, reporting, prediction, and management, which was developed before the 2005 growing season. The framework’s linchpin is a website that provides real-time, county-level information on the spread of the disease. The study assesses the value of the information tool to farmers and factors that influence that value. The information’s value depends most heavily on farmers’ perceptions of the forecast’s accuracy. The study finds that the framework’s information is valuable to farmers even in a year with a low rust infection like that of 2005. We estimate that the information provided by the framework increased U.S. soybean producers’ profits by a total of $11-$299 million in 2005, or between 16 cents and $4.12 per acre, depending on the quality of information and other factors. The reported cost of the framework was between $2.6 million and almost $5 million in 2005.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service in its series Economic Research Report with number 7208.

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Date of creation: 2006
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Handle: RePEc:ags:uersrr:7208

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Related research

Keywords: Soybean rust; farmers’ perceptions; forecast accuracy; updating beliefs; value of information; real-time disease location; plant disease management; pest management; risk management; Crop Production/Industries; Risk and Uncertainty;

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Cited by:
  1. Bekkerman, Anton & Goodwin, Barry K. & Piggott, Nicholas E., 2008. "Spatio-temporal Risk and Severity Analysis of Soybean Rust in the United States," Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Western Agricultural Economics Association, vol. 33(3), December.
  2. Malcolm, Scott A. & Marshall, Elizabeth P. & Aillery, Marcel P. & Heisey, Paul W. & Livingston, Michael J. & Day-Rubenstein, Kelly A., 2012. "Agricultural Adaptation to a Changing Climate: Economic and Environmental Implications Vary by U.S. Region," Economic Research Report, United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service 127734, United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service.
  3. Gomez, Miguel I. & Nunez, Hector M. & Onal, Hayri, 2009. "Economic Impacts of Soybean Rust on the US Soybean Sector," 2009 Annual Meeting, July 26-28, 2009, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association 49595, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
  4. Ranjan, Ram, 2006. "Technology Adoption against Invasive Species," 2006 Annual meeting, July 23-26, Long Beach, CA 21174, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
  5. Lee, Donna J. & Kim, C.S. & Schaible, Glenn D., 2006. "Estimating the Cost of Invasive Species on U.S. Agriculture: The U.S. Soybean Market," 2006 Annual meeting, July 23-26, Long Beach, CA 21113, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
  6. Kiker, Greg & Ranjan, Ram, 2006. "Decision Support System for Soybean Rust (Phakopsora pachyrhizi) Management using QnD," 2006 Annual meeting, July 23-26, Long Beach, CA 21248, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).

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