Insecticide use impacts of Integrated Pest Management (IPM) Farmer Field Schools: Evidence from onion farmers in the Philippines
This article empirically examines the impact of Farmer Field Schools (FFS) on insecticide use by onion farmers in the Philippines. FFS is an intensive Integrated Pest Management (IPM) information dissemination method that encourages producers to lower their reliance on chemical insecticides for controlling pests and diseases in their farms. These FFS-IPM trainings have been conducted within vegetable-based production systems in the Philippines. The data used in the study are from a 2009 face-to-face farm-level survey of 200 onion growers in Nueva Ecija province. Using instrumental variable (IV) procedures to control for endogeneity and selection problems in the data, we find that FFS-trained onion farmers in the Philippines have significantly lower insecticide expenditures (~PhP5,000) than non-FFS trained control farmers. When econometric problems due to endogeneity and selection are not controlled for, the FFS training did not show any statistically significant effect on insecticide use. The insecticide reducing effect of FFS has important environmental and health implications, and provides evidence about the effectiveness of the FFS training method in disseminating important IPM concepts in the country.
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