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Is There Evidence of a Critical Mass in the Mid-Atlantic Agriculture Sector Between 1949 and 1997?

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  • Lynch, Lori
  • Carpenter, Janet

Abstract

Ongoing farmland loss has led county planners to ask “is there a critical mass of farmland needed?†to retain a viable agricultural sector. This study examines whether counties lost farmland at a faster rate if the number of agricultural acres fell below a critical threshold. Results from six Mid-Atlantic states over the period 1949 to 1997 indicate that counties with fewer agricultural acres lost farmland at a faster rate. However, after splitting the study period into two time segments (1949–1978 and 1978–1997) and modeling separately, this result was not found for the later time period, suggesting a uniform critical mass level may not exist. Population growth in a county accelerated farmland loss over all time periods.

Suggested Citation

  • Lynch, Lori & Carpenter, Janet, 2003. "Is There Evidence of a Critical Mass in the Mid-Atlantic Agriculture Sector Between 1949 and 1997?," Agricultural and Resource Economics Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 32(1), pages 116-128, April.
  • Handle: RePEc:cup:agrerw:v:32:y:2003:i:01:p:116-128_00
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    Cited by:

    1. Lynch, Lori & Duke, Joshua M., 2007. "Economic Benefits of Farmland Preservation: Evidence from the United States," Working Papers 7342, University of Maryland, Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics.
    2. Hailu, Yohannes G. & Brown, Cheryl, 2006. "A Spatial Simultaneous Growth Equilibrium Modeling of Agricultural Land Development in the Northeast United States," 2006 Annual meeting, July 23-26, Long Beach, CA 21082, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
    3. Lynch, Lori & Gray, Wayne & Geoghegan, Jacqueline, 2007. "An Evaluation of Working Land and Open Space Preservation Programs in Maryland: Are They Paying Too Much?," Working Papers 6887, University of Maryland, Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics.
    4. Hailu, Yohannes G. & Brown, Cheryl, 2007. "Regional Growth Impacts on Agricultural Land Development: A Spatial Model for Three States," Agricultural and Resource Economics Review, Northeastern Agricultural and Resource Economics Association, vol. 36(1), pages 1-15, April.
    5. Bills, Nelson L., 2007. "Fifty Years of Farmland Protection Legislation in the Northeast: Persistent Issues and Emergent Research Opportunities," Agricultural and Resource Economics Review, Northeastern Agricultural and Resource Economics Association, vol. 36(2), pages 1-9, October.
    6. Lynch, Lori, 2003. "Do Agricultural Preservation Programs And Preferential Property Tax Programs Affect Farmland Conversion?," 2003 Annual meeting, July 27-30, Montreal, Canada 22100, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
    7. Towe, Charles A. & Nickerson, Cynthia J. & Bockstael, Nancy E., 2005. "An Empirical Examination of Real Options and the Timing of Land Conversions," 2005 Annual meeting, July 24-27, Providence, RI 19125, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
    8. Joshua M. Duke & Brian J. Schilling & Kevin P. Sullivan & J. Dixon Esseks & Paul D. Gottlieb & Lori Lynch, 2016. "Illiquid Capital: Are Conservation Easement Payments Reinvested in Farms?," Applied Economic Perspectives and Policy, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 38(3), pages 449-473.
    9. Abler, David, 2004. "Multifunctionality, Agricultural Policy, and Environmental Policy," Agricultural and Resource Economics Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 33(1), pages 8-17, April.
    10. Liu, Xiangping & Lynch, Lori, 2006. "Do Agricultural Preservation Programs Affect Farmland Conversion? Evidence from a Propensity Score Matching Estimator," Working Papers 28569, University of Maryland, Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics.
    11. Joshua Duke & Lori Lynch, 2007. "Gauging support for innovative farmland preservation techniques," Policy Sciences, Springer;Society of Policy Sciences, vol. 40(2), pages 123-155, June.

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