IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/anr/reseco/v4y2012p225-264.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

The Economics of the Food System Revolution

Author

Listed:
  • Thomas Reardon

    () (School of Agricultural Economics and Rural Development, Renmin University of China, Beijing, 100872 China
    Department of Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics, Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan 48824, International Food Policy Research Institute, Beijing 10081, China)

  • C. Peter Timmer

    (Professor Emeritus, Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02138)

Abstract

A revolution in food systems—food supply chains upstream from farms, to the food industry in the midstream segments of processing and wholesale and in the downstream segment of retail, then on to consumers—has been under way in the United States for more than a century and in developing countries for more than three decades. The transformation includes extensive consolidation, very rapid institutional and organizational change, and progressive modernization of the procurement system. In this article we examine the economics of these system-wide changes. We argue that the steps of conceptualizing and empirically researching this transformation—its patterns and trends, determinants, and impacts on farms and processing small and micro enterprises—are still in their infancy because of (a) remaining limitations on data suitable for formal modeling and hypothesis testing and (b) the sheer complexity of food system–related decisions that need to be modeled and understood. With the rapid accumulation of high-quality data now under way, conceptual and theoretical progress is also likely to be rapid.

Suggested Citation

  • Thomas Reardon & C. Peter Timmer, 2012. "The Economics of the Food System Revolution," Annual Review of Resource Economics, Annual Reviews, vol. 4(1), pages 225-264, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:anr:reseco:v:4:y:2012:p:225-264
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.annualreviews.org/doi/abs/10.1146/annurev.resource.050708.144147
    Download Restriction: Full text downloads are only available to subscribers. Visit the abstract page for more information.

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Charles Mason & Andrew Plantinga, 2011. "Contracting for Impure Public Goods: Carbon Offsets and Additionality," NBER Working Papers 16963, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Lyubov Kurkalova & Catherine Kling & Jinhua Zhao, 2006. "Green Subsidies in Agriculture: Estimating the Adoption Costs of Conservation Tillage from Observed Behavior," Canadian Journal of Agricultural Economics/Revue canadienne d'agroeconomie, Canadian Agricultural Economics Society/Societe canadienne d'agroeconomie, vol. 54(2), pages 247-267, June.
    3. Harrison Fell & Dallas Burtraw & Richard Morgenstern & Karen Palmer, 2012. "Climate Policy Design with Correlated Uncertainties in Offset Supply and Abatement Cost," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 88(3), pages 589-611.
    4. Michael Grubb & Tim Laing & Thomas Counsell & Catherine Willan, 2011. "Global carbon mechanisms: lessons and implications," Climatic Change, Springer, vol. 104(3), pages 539-573, February.
    5. Feng, Hongli, 2005. "The dynamics of carbon sequestration and alternative carbon accounting, with an application to the upper Mississippi River Basin," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(1), pages 23-35, July.
    6. Hongli Feng, 2005. "Dynamics of Carbon Sequestration and Alternative Carbon Accounting, with an Application to the Upper Mississippi River Basin, The," Center for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD) Publications 05-wp386, Center for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD) at Iowa State University.
    7. Woodward, Richard T., 2011. "Double-dipping in environmental markets," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 61(2), pages 153-169, March.
    8. Antle, John & Capalbo, Susan & Mooney, Sian & Elliott, Edward & Paustian, Keith, 2003. "Spatial heterogeneity, contract design, and the efficiency of carbon sequestration policies for agriculture," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 46(2), pages 231-250, September.
    9. James B. Bushnell, 2011. "The Economics of Carbon Offsets," NBER Chapters,in: The Design and Implementation of U.S. Climate Policy, pages 197-209 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    10. Hongli Feng & Lyubov A. Kurkalova & Catherine L. Kling & Philip W. Gassman, 2005. "Economic and Environmental Co-benefits of Carbon Sequestration in Agricultural Soils: Retiring Agricultural Land in the Upper Mississippi River Basin," Center for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD) Publications 05-wp384, Center for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD) at Iowa State University.
    11. Joseph E. Aldy & Alan J. Krupnick & Richard G. Newell & Ian W. H. Parry & William A. Pizer, 2010. "Designing Climate Mitigation Policy," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, pages 903-934.
    12. Schneider, Uwe A. & Kumar, Pushpam, 2008. "Greenhouse Gas Mitigation through Agriculture," Choices, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 23(1).
    13. Lyubov Kurkalova & Catherine Kling & Jinhua Zhao, 2004. "Value of agricultural non-point source pollution measurement technology: assessment from a policy perspective," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 36(20), pages 2287-2298.
    14. Elbakidze, Levan & McCarl, Bruce A., 2004. "Should We Consider the Co-Benefits of Agricultural GHG Offsets?," Choices, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 19(3).
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Timmer, C. Peter, 2013. "Coping with Climate Change: A Food Policy Approach," 2013 Conference (57th), February 5-8, 2013, Sydney, Australia 152188, Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society.
    2. Rischke, Ramona & Kimenju, Simon C. & Klasen, Stephan & Qaim, Matin, 2015. "Supermarkets and food consumption patterns: The case of small towns in Kenya," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 52(C), pages 9-21.
    3. Qaim, Matin & Andersson, Camilla I.M. & Chege, Christine G.K. & Kimenju, Simon Chege & Klasen, Stephan & Rischke, Ramona, 2014. "Nutrition Effects of the Supermarket Revolution on Urban Consumers and Smallholder Farmers in Kenya," 2014 Annual Meeting, July 27-29, 2014, Minneapolis, Minnesota 177204, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
    4. Spielman, David J. & Kolady, Deepthi E. & Cavalieri, Anthony & Rao, N. Chandrasekhara, 2014. "The seed and agricultural biotechnology industries in India: An analysis of industry structure, competition, and policy options," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 45(C), pages 88-100.
    5. Gómez, Miguel I. & Barrett, Christopher B. & Raney, Terri & Pinstrup-Andersen, Per & Meerman, Janice & Croppenstedt, André & Carisma, Brian & Thompson, Brian, 2013. "Post-green revolution food systems and the triple burden of malnutrition," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 42(C), pages 129-138.
    6. Rao, Elizaphan J.O. & Qaim, Matin, 2013. "Supermarkets and agricultural labor demand in Kenya: A gendered perspective," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 38(C), pages 165-176.
    7. Sekabira, Haruna & Qaim, Matin, 2016. "Mobile Money, Agricultural Marketing, and Off-Farm Income in Uganda," Discussion Papers 234998, Georg-August-Universitaet Goettingen, GlobalFood, Department of Agricultural Economics and Rural Development.
    8. Scott, Gregory J., 2014. "Agregando valores às cadeias de valor," RAE - Revista de Administração de Empresas, FGV-EAESP Escola de Administração de Empresas de São Paulo (Brazil), vol. 54(1), January.
    9. Minten, Bart & Assefa, Thomas Woldu & Abebe, Girum & Engida, Ermias & Tamru, Seneshaw, 2016. "Food processing, transformation, and job creation: The case of Ethiopia’s enjera markets," ESSP working papers 96, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    10. Chiputwa, Brian & Qaim, Matin, 2014. "Sustainability standards, gender, and nutrition among smallholder farmers in Uganda," Discussion Papers 191001, Georg-August-Universitaet Goettingen, GlobalFood, Department of Agricultural Economics and Rural Development.

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:anr:reseco:v:4:y:2012:p:225-264. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (http://www.annualreviews.org). General contact details of provider: http://www.annualreviews.org .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.