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Multifunctional Agriculture and Domestic/International Policy Choice


  • Blandford, David
  • Boisvert, Richard N.


The concept of multifunctionality, in which agriculture is viewed as a source of both commodity and non-commodity outputs, has stimulated debate on the desirability of further trade liberalization. We explore the economics of multifunctionality and its policy implications. We argue for a new policy approach in which land and natural resource managers are remunerated for positive non-commodity outputs and penalized for negative outputs. This would require devolution in policy implementation from the centre to the local level. Such an approach would permit countries to achieve broader social objectives, while at the same time continuing to pursue trade liberalization.

Suggested Citation

  • Blandford, David & Boisvert, Richard N., 2002. "Multifunctional Agriculture and Domestic/International Policy Choice," Estey Centre Journal of International Law and Trade Policy, Estey Centre for Law and Economics in International Trade, vol. 3(1).
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:ecjilt:23910

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Peterson, Jeffrey M. & Boisvert, Richard N., 2000. "Optimal Land Conversion At The Rural-Urban Fringe With Positive And Negative Agricultural Externalities," 2000 Annual meeting, July 30-August 2, Tampa, FL 21722, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
    2. Segerson, Kathleen, 1988. "Uncertainty and incentives for nonpoint pollution control," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 15(1), pages 87-98, March.
    3. John E. Floyd, 1965. "The Effects of Farm Price Supports on the Returns to Land and Labor in Agriculture," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 73, pages 148-148.
    4. Wu, JunJie & Babcock, Bruce A., 1995. "Optimal Design Of A Voluntary Green Payment Program Under Asymmetric Information," Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Western Agricultural Economics Association, vol. 20(02), December.
    5. Antle, John M. & Wagenet, Robert J., 1995. "Why Scientists Should Talk to Economists - and Vice Versa," Choices, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 10(4).
    6. Spulber, Daniel F., 1985. "Effluent regulation and long-run optimality," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 12(2), pages 103-116, June.
    7. Peterson, Jeffrey M. & Boisvert, Richard N. & de Gorter, Harry, 1999. "Multifunctionality and Optimal Environmental Policies for Agriculture in an Open Economy," Working Papers 127701, Cornell University, Department of Applied Economics and Management.
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    Cited by:

    1. Haaren, Christina V. & Bills, Nelson L., 2007. "Agri-environmental Programs in the US and the EU: Lessons from Germany and New York State," Working Papers 127018, Cornell University, Department of Applied Economics and Management.
    2. Bertoni, Danilo & Olper, Alessandro, 2012. "The Political Economy Of Agri-Environmental Measures: An Empirical Assessment At The Eu Regional Level," APSTRACT: Applied Studies in Agribusiness and Commerce, AGRIMBA, vol. 6.
    3. Casamatta, Georges & Rausser, Gordon & Simon, Leo, 2011. "Optimal taxation with joint production of agriculture and rural amenities," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(3), pages 544-553, September.


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