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Stochastic Food Prices And Slash-And-Burn Agriculture

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  • Barrett, Christopher B.

Abstract

This paper explores the interrelationship between poverty, risk, and deforestation by small farmers in the low-income tropics. A nonseparable household model reveals how exogenous shocks to the mean or variance of a food price distribution might affect peasants' incentives to clear forest. The resulting links between food price policy, farmer behavior, and deforestation offer an innovative explanation of the vicious cycle of peasant immiserization and tropical deforestation. An intriguing, testable hypothesis also emerges: that market-oriented reforms that increase the mean and variance of food prices may inadvertently stimulate deforestation in economies in which a sizable proportion of farmers are net buyers.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Utah State University, Economics Department in its series Economics Research Institute, ERI Study Papers with number 28344.

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Date of creation: 1998
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Handle: RePEc:ags:usuesp:28344

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Web page: http://www.econ.usu.edu/
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Keywords: Demand and Price Analysis; Farm Management;

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References

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  1. Elnagheeb, Abdelmoneim H. & Bromley, Daniel W., 1994. "Extensification of agriculture and deforestation: Empirical evidence from Sudan," Agricultural Economics, Blackwell, vol. 10(2), pages 193-200, April.
  2. Barrett, Christopher B., 2002. "Food security and food assistance programs," Handbook of Agricultural Economics, in: B. L. Gardner & G. C. Rausser (ed.), Handbook of Agricultural Economics, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 40, pages 2103-2190 Elsevier.
  3. Barrett, Christopher B., 1998. "Immiserized growth in liberalized agriculture," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 26(5), pages 743-753, May.
  4. Larson, Bruce A. & Bromely, Daniel W., 1991. "Natural resources prices, export policies, and deforestation: The case of sudan," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 19(10), pages 1289-1297, October.
  5. Deaton, Angus, 1989. "Rice Prices and Income Distribution in Thailand: A Non-parametric Analysis," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 99(395), pages 1-37, Supplemen.
  6. Kramer, R.A. & Sharma, N. & Munashinghe, M., 1995. "Valuing Tropical Forests. Methodology and Cade Study of Madagascar," Papers 13, World Bank - The World Bank Environment Paper.
  7. Binswanger, Hans P., 1991. "Brazilian policies that encourage deforestation in the Amazon," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 19(7), pages 821-829, July.
  8. Christopher B. Barrett & Paul A. Dorosh, 1996. "Farmers' Welfare and Changing Food Prices: Nonparametric Evidence from Rice in Madagascar," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 78(3), pages 656-669.
  9. Barrett, Christopher B., 1997. "Liberalization and food price distributions: ARCH-M evidence from Madagascar," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 22(2), pages 155-173, April.
  10. Epstein, L, 1975. "A Disaggregate Analysis of Consumer Choice under Uncertainty," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 43(5-6), pages 877-92, Sept.-Nov.
  11. Deacon Robert T., 1995. "Assessing the Relationship between Government Policy and Deforestation," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 28(1), pages 1-18, January.
  12. Perrings, Charles, 1989. "An optimal path to extinction? : Poverty and resource degradation in the open agrarian economy," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 30(1), pages 1-24, January.
  13. Allen, Julia C., 1985. "Wood energy and preservation of woodlands in semi-arid developing countries: The case of Dodoma region, Tanzania," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 19(1-2), pages 59-84.
  14. Elnagheeb, Abdelmoneim H. & Bromley, Daniel W., 1994. "Extensification of agriculture and deforestation: empirical evidence from Sudan," Agricultural Economics: The Journal of the International Association of Agricultural Economists, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 10(2), April.
  15. Bluffstone Randall A., 1995. "The Effect of Labor Market Performance on Deforestation in Developing Countries under Open Access: An Example from Rural Nepal," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 29(1), pages 42-63, July.
  16. Larson, Bruce A. & Bromley, Daniel W., 1990. "Property rights, externalities, and resource degradation : Locating the tragedy," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(2), pages 235-262, October.
  17. Krueger, Anne O & Schiff, Maurice & Valdes, Alberto, 1988. "Agricultural Incentives in Developing Countries: Measuring the Effect of Sectoral and Economywide Policies," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 2(3), pages 255-71, September.
  18. Mesfin Bezuneh & Brady Deaton, 1997. "Food Aid Impacts on Safety Nets: Theory and Evidence—A Conceptual Perspective on Safety Nets," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 79(2), pages 672-677.
  19. Douglas Southgate, 1990. "The Causes of Land Degradation along "Spontaneously" Expanding Agricultural Frontiers in the Third World," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 66(1), pages 93-101.
  20. Jones, D. W. & O'Neill, R. V., 1992. "Endogenous environmental degradation and land conservation: agricultural land use in a large region," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 6(1), pages 79-101, July.
  21. Barrett, Christopher B., 1996. "On price risk and the inverse farm size-productivity relationship," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 51(2), pages 193-215, December.
  22. Meyer, Jack, 1987. "Two-moment Decision Models and Expected Utility Maximization," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 77(3), pages 421-30, June.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Barrett, Christopher B., 1998. "Markets, Social Norms, And Governments In The Service Of Environmentally Sustainable Economic Development," Economics Research Institute, ERI Study Papers 28352, Utah State University, Economics Department.
  2. Holden, Stein T. & Barrett, Christopher B. & Hagos, Fitsum, 2003. "Food-For-Work For Poverty Reduction And The Promotion Of Sustainable Land Use: Can It Work?," Working Papers 14759, Cornell University, Department of Applied Economics and Management.
  3. Yoshito Takasaki, 2011. "Economic models of shifting cultivation: a review," Tsukuba Economics Working Papers 2011-006, Economics, Graduate School of Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Tsukuba.
  4. Bowman, Maria S. & Amacher, Gregory S. & Merry, Frank D., 2008. "Fire use and prevention by traditional households in the Brazilian Amazon," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 67(1), pages 117-130, August.
  5. Yoshito Takasaki & BRADFORD L. BARHAM & Oliver T. Coomes, 2000. "Wealth Accumulation and Activity Choice Evolution Among Amazonian Forest Peasant Households," Wisconsin-Madison Agricultural and Applied Economics Staff Papers 434, Wisconsin-Madison Agricultural and Applied Economics Department.
  6. Yoshito Takasaki & Oliver T. Coomes & Christian Abizaid & St?phanie Brisson, 2011. "An efficient nonmarket institution under imperfect markets: Labor sharing for tropical forest clearing," Tsukuba Economics Working Papers 2011-007, Economics, Graduate School of Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Tsukuba, revised Jan 2012.
  7. Andersson, Camilla & Mekonnen, Alemu & Stage, Jesper, 2009. "Impacts of the Productive Safety Net Program in Ethiopia on Livestock and Tree Holdings of Rural Households," Discussion Papers dp-09-05-efd, Resources For the Future.
  8. Pascual, Unai & Barbier, Edward B., 2003. "Modelling Land Degradation In Low-Input Agriculture: The 'Population Pressure Hypothesis' Revised," 2003 Annual Meeting, August 16-22, 2003, Durban, South Africa 25827, International Association of Agricultural Economists.
  9. Schuck, Eric C. & Nganje, William & Yantio, Debazou, 2002. "The role of land tenure and extension education in the adoption of slash and burn agriculture," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(1), pages 61-70, November.
  10. Takasaki, Yoshito, 2000. "Deforestation And Asset Accumulation Among Small Scale Farmers," 2000 Annual meeting, July 30-August 2, Tampa, FL 21786, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
  11. Barrett, Christopher B. & Holden, Stein & Clay, Daniel C., 2002. "Can Food-for-Work Programmes Reduce Vulnerability?," Working Paper Series UNU-WIDER Research Paper , World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
  12. Yuki Yamamoto & Kenji Takeuchi & Gunnar Kohlin, 2013. "What Factors Promote Peatland Fire Prevention? Evidence from Central Kalimantan, Indonesia," Discussion Papers 1312, Graduate School of Economics, Kobe University.

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