IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/bla/jageco/v61y2010i2p240-258.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Why Isn't More US Farmland Organic?

Author

Listed:
  • Nicolai V. Kuminoff
  • Ada Wossink

Abstract

We develop a theoretical model to assess the dollar compensation required to induce conventional growers to convert to organic. The model incorporates the uncertainty in producers' expectations about future returns and about the impact of policy changes on these expectations in particular. We demonstrate that a new policy which favours organic can have opposing effects on the rate of conversion. An increase in relative returns to organic today will increase conversion rates. However, if the future of the policy programme is uncertain, its introduction can increase the value of waiting to switch, which will decrease conversion rates. We then develop an empirical switching regression model that enables direct estimation of the value associated with being able to postpone the conversion decision until some of the uncertainty is resolved. The model is applied to data on organic and conventional soybeans before and after major changes in US farm policy toward organic growers. The results suggest that sunk costs associated with conversion to organic coupled with uncertainty about future returns can help to explain why there is so little organic farmland in the USA. Copyright (c) 2010 The Authors. Journal compilation (c) 2010 The Agricultural Economics Society.

Suggested Citation

  • Nicolai V. Kuminoff & Ada Wossink, 2010. "Why Isn't More US Farmland Organic?," Journal of Agricultural Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 61(2), pages 240-258.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:jageco:v:61:y:2010:i:2:p:240-258
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.blackwell-synergy.com/doi/abs/10.1111/j.1477-9552.2009.00235.x
    File Function: link to full text
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.

    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. 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.
    2. Michael Burton & Dan Rigby & Trevor Young, 1999. "Analysis of the Determinants of Adoption of Organic Horticultural Techniques in the UK," Journal of Agricultural Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 50(1), pages 47-63.
    3. Hassett, Kevin A & Metcalf, Gilbert E, 1999. "Investment with Uncertain Tax Policy: Does Random Tax Policy Discourage Investment?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 109(457), pages 372-393, July.
    4. Teresa Serra & David Zilberman & José M. Gil, 2008. "Differential uncertainties and risk attitudes between conventional and organic producers: the case of Spanish arable crop farmers," Agricultural Economics, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 39(2), pages 219-229, September.
    5. Miller, Marcus & Zhang, Lei, 1996. "Oil Price Hikes and Development Triggers in Peace and War," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 106(435), pages 445-457, March.
    6. Abebayehu Tegene & Keith Wiebe & Betsey Kuhn, 1999. "Irreversible Investment Under Uncertainty: Conservation Easements and the Option to Develop Agricultural Land," Journal of Agricultural Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 50(2), pages 203-219.
    7. Spiller, Pablo T & Huang, Cliff J, 1986. "On the Extent of the Market: Wholesale Gasoline in the Northeastern United States," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 35(2), pages 131-145, December.
    8. Merton, Robert C., 1976. "Option pricing when underlying stock returns are discontinuous," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 3(1-2), pages 125-144.
    9. Robert McDonald & Daniel Siegel, 1986. "The Value of Waiting to Invest," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 101(4), pages 707-727.
    10. Ada Wossink & Cornelis Gardebroek, 2006. "Environmental Policy Uncertainty and Marketable Permit Systems: The Dutch Phosphate Quota Program," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 88(1), pages 16-27.
    11. Bengtsson, Jens & Olhager, Jan, 2002. "Valuation of product-mix flexibility using real options," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 78(1), pages 13-28, July.
    12. Schatzki, Todd, 2003. "Options, uncertainty and sunk costs:: an empirical analysis of land use change," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 46(1), pages 86-105, July.
    13. McBride, William D. & Greene, Catherine R., 2008. "The Profitability of Organic Soybean Production," 2008 Annual Meeting, July 27-29, 2008, Orlando, Florida 6449, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
    14. Martzoukos, Spiros H. & Trigeorgis, Lenos, 2002. "Real (investment) options with multiple sources of rare events," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 136(3), pages 696-706, February.
    15. Archer, David W. & Kludze, Hillarius, 2006. "Transition to Organic Cropping Systems under Risk," 2006 Annual meeting, July 23-26, Long Beach, CA 21278, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
    16. Dixit, Avinash K, 1989. "Entry and Exit Decisions under Uncertainty," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(3), pages 620-638, June.
    17. Oliver Musshoff & Norbert Hirschauer, 2008. "Adoption of organic farming in Germany and Austria: an integrative dynamic investment perspective," Agricultural Economics, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 39(1), pages 135-145, July.
    18. Lohr, Luanne, 2001. "The Importance Of The Conservation Security Act To Us Competitiveness In Global Organic Markets," Faculty Series 16706, University of Georgia, Department of Agricultural and Applied Economics.
    19. Delate, K. M. & Duffy, Michael & Chase, Craig A. & Holste, A. & Friedrich, H. & Wantate, N, 2003. "An Economic Comparison of Organic and Conventional Grain Crops in a Long-Term Agroecological Research (Ltar) Site in Iowa," Staff General Research Papers Archive 11818, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
    20. Lohr, Luanne & Salomonsson, Lennart, 2000. "Conversion subsidies for organic production: results from Sweden and lessons for the United States," Agricultural Economics of Agricultural Economists, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 22(2), March.
    21. Cornelis Gardebroek, 2006. "Comparing risk attitudes of organic and non-organic farmers with a Bayesian random coefficient model," European Review of Agricultural Economics, Foundation for the European Review of Agricultural Economics, vol. 33(4), pages 485-510, December.
    22. KS Pietola & AO Lansink, 2001. "Farmer response to policies promoting organic farming technologies in Finland," European Review of Agricultural Economics, Foundation for the European Review of Agricultural Economics, vol. 28(1), pages 1-15, March.
    23. Szvetlana Acs & Paul Berentsen & Ruud Huirne & Marcel van Asseldonk, 2009. "Effect of yield and price risk on conversion from conventional to organic farming ," Australian Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society, vol. 53(3), pages 393-411, July.
    24. Odening, Martin & Musshoff, Oliver & Utesch, Volker, 2004. "Der Wechsel vom konventionellen zum ökologischen Landbau: Eine investitionstheoretische Betrachtung," German Journal of Agricultural Economics, Humboldt-Universitaet zu Berlin, Department for Agricultural Economics, vol. 53(6).
    25. Martin Odening & Oliver Mußhoff & Alfons Balmann, 2005. "Investment decisions in hog finishing: an application of the real options approach," Agricultural Economics, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 32(1), pages 47-60, January.
    26. Tirtha Dhar & Jeremy D. Foltz, 2005. "Milk by Any Other Name … Consumer Benefits from Labeled Milk," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 87(1), pages 214-228.
    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. Delbridge, Timothy A. & Fernholz, Carmen & King, Robert P. & Lazarus, William, 2013. "A whole-farm profitability analysis of organic and conventional cropping systems," Agricultural Systems, Elsevier, vol. 122(C), pages 1-10.
    2. Maack, Moritz & Maart, Syster Christin & Musshoff, Oliver, 2012. "The Impact of Price Floors -A Real Options Based Experimental Approach-," 2012 Conference (56th), February 7-10, 2012, Freemantle, Australia 124328, Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society.
    3. Singerman, Ariel & Hart, Chad E. & Lence, Sergio H., 2012. "Revenue Protection for Organic Producers: Too Much or Too Little?," Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Western Agricultural Economics Association, vol. 37(3), December.
    4. Mitchell, Paul D. & Rejesus, Roderick M. & Coble, Keith H. & Knight, Thomas O., 2010. "A Real Options Framework for Analyzing Program Participation as Human Capital Investments: The Case of the Average Crop Revenue Election (ACRE) Program," Staff Paper Series 547, University of Wisconsin, Agricultural and Applied Economics.
    5. Uematsu, Hiroki & Mishra, Ashok K., 2012. "Organic farmers or conventional farmers: Where's the money?," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 78(C), pages 55-62.
    6. Läpple, Doris & Kelley, Hugh, 2013. "Understanding the uptake of organic farming: Accounting for heterogeneities among Irish farmers," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(C), pages 11-19.
    7. repec:ags:aaea13:150610 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Hermann, Daniel & Musshoff, Oliver & Agethen, Katrin, 2014. "I will never switch sides: an experimental approach to determine drivers for investment decisions of conventional and organic hog farmers," 2014 International Congress, August 26-29, 2014, Ljubljana, Slovenia 183084, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
    9. Delbridge, Timothy A., 2013. "Threshold Effects in Transition to Organic Dairy Production," 2013 Annual Meeting, August 4-6, 2013, Washington, D.C. 150554, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
    10. Syster C. Maart-Noelck & Oliver Musshoff, 2013. "Investing Today or Tomorrow? An Experimental Approach to Farmers’ Decision Behaviour," Journal of Agricultural Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 64(2), pages 295-318, June.
    11. repec:spr:endesu:v:19:y:2017:i:4:d:10.1007_s10668-016-9800-0 is not listed on IDEAS
    12. McFadden, Jonathan R. & Huffman, Wallace E., 2017. "Willingness-to-pay for natural, organic, and conventional foods: The effects of information and meaningful labels," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 68(C), pages 214-232.
    13. repec:eee:ecolec:v:140:y:2017:i:c:p:177-189 is not listed on IDEAS
    14. Lee, Sangjun & Zhao, Jinhua & Thornsbury, Suzanne, 2013. "Extreme Events and Land Use Decisions under Climate Change in Tart Cherry Industry in Michigan," 2013 Annual Meeting, August 4-6, 2013, Washington, D.C. 150568, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
    15. Lauren C. Ponisio & Paul R. Ehrlich, 2016. "Diversification, Yield and a New Agricultural Revolution: Problems and Prospects," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 8(11), pages 1-15, November.

    More about this item

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    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:bla:jageco:v:61:y:2010:i:2:p:240-258. 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: (Wiley-Blackwell Digital Licensing) or (Christopher F. Baum). General contact details of provider: http://www.blackwellpublishing.com/journal.asp?ref=0021-857X .

    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.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with 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.