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Potential impacts of Bt eggplant on economic surplus and farmers' health in India

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  • Vijesh V. Krishna
  • Matin Qaim

Abstract

In this article, the potential impacts of Bt eggplant technology in Indian agriculture are analyzed. Several proprietary Bt hybrids are likely to be commercialized in the near future. Based on field trial data, it is shown that the technology can significantly reduce insecticide applications and increase effective yields. Comprehensive farm-survey data are used to project farm-level effects and future adoption rates. Simulations show that the aggregate economic surplus gains of Bt hybrids could be around US$108 million per year. Consumers will capture a large share of these gains, but farmers and the innovating company will benefit too. As the company has also shared its technology with the public sector, Bt open-pollinated varieties might become available with a certain time lag. This would make the technology more accessible, especially for resource-poor farmers, entailing further improvements in welfare and distribution effects. The wider implications of the private-public technology transfer are discussed. Furthermore, the potential benefits for farmers' health resulting from reduced insecticide applications are examined, using an econometric model and a cost-of-illness approach. These benefits are worth an additional $3-4 million per year, yet they constitute only a small fraction of the technology's environmental and health externalities. More research is needed for comprehensive impact analysis. Copyright 2008 International Association of Agricultural Economists.

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  • Vijesh V. Krishna & Matin Qaim, 2008. "Potential impacts of Bt eggplant on economic surplus and farmers' health in India," Agricultural Economics, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 38(2), pages 167-180, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:agecon:v:38:y:2008:i:2:p:167-180
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    Cited by:

    1. Deepthi Kolady & William Lesser, 2012. "Genetically-engineered crops and their effects on varietal diversity: a case of Bt eggplant in India," Agriculture and Human Values, Springer;The Agriculture, Food, & Human Values Society (AFHVS), vol. 29(1), pages 3-15, March.
    2. Krishna, Vijesh V. & Pascual, Unai & Zilberman, David, 2009. "Channeling consumption preferences for co-existence of landrace and modern varieties in-situ," 2009 Conference, August 16-22, 2009, Beijing, China 51748, International Association of Agricultural Economists.
    3. Klara Fischer & Elisabeth Ekener-Petersen & Lotta Rydhmer & Karin Edvardsson Björnberg, 2015. "Social Impacts of GM Crops in Agriculture: A Systematic Literature Review," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 7(7), pages 1-23, July.
    4. Kouser, Shahzad & Qaim, Matin, 2012. "Valuing financial, health and environmental benefits of Bt cotton in Pakistan," 2012 Conference, August 18-24, 2012, Foz do Iguacu, Brazil 126544, International Association of Agricultural Economists.
    5. Rolf A. Groeneveld & Erik Ansink & Clemens C.M. Van de Wiel & Justus Wesseler, 2011. "Benefits and Costs of Biologically Contained Genetically Modified Tomatoes and Eggplants in Italy and Spain," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 3(8), pages 1-17, August.
    6. Kouser, Shahzad & Qaim, Matin, 2011. "Impact of Bt cotton on pesticide poisoning in smallholder agriculture: A panel data analysis," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 70(11), pages 2105-2113, September.
    7. Krishna, Vijesh V. & Qaim, Matin, 2011. "Pesticide Reduction Sustainability of Bt Technology in India," 2011 International Congress, August 30-September 2, 2011, Zurich, Switzerland 114696, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
    8. Shahzad Kouser & Matin Qaim, 2012. "Valuing financial, health, and environmental benefits of Bt cotton in Pakistan," Courant Research Centre: Poverty, Equity and Growth - Discussion Papers 105, Courant Research Centre PEG.
    9. Solomon Asfaw & Dagmar Mithöfer & Hermann Waibel, 2010. "Agrifood supply chain, private-sector standards, and farmers' health: evidence from Kenya," Agricultural Economics, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 41(3-4), pages 251-263, May.
    10. Abedullah & Ali, Haseeb & Kouser, Shahzad, 2012. "Pesticide or Wastewater, Which One is Bigger Culprit for Acute Health Symptoms among Vegetable Growers in Pakistan’s Punjab," 2012 Conference, August 18-24, 2012, Foz do Iguacu, Brazil 126598, International Association of Agricultural Economists.
    11. Krishna, Vijesh V. & Qaim, Matin, 2012. "Bt cotton and sustainability of pesticide reductions in India," Agricultural Systems, Elsevier, vol. 107(C), pages 47-55.
    12. Birthal, Pratap S., 2013. "Application of Frontier Technologies for Agricultural Development," Indian Journal of Agricultural Economics, Indian Society of Agricultural Economics, vol. 68(1).

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