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Pesticide use and farmers' health in China's rice production

  • Fangbin Qiao
  • Jikun Huang
  • Linxiu Zhang
  • Scott Rozelle

Purpose – The purpose of this study is trying to document and examine the impacts of pesticide use on farmers' health. Different from previous studies, the paper is not only going to focus on the visible effect, but also the invisible effect. At the same time, the paper is going to divided the pesticides into highly toxic and low toxic pesticides and estimate their different impacts on farmers' health, respectively. Design/methodology/approach – This paper uses regression techniques based on a farm household survey gathered by the authors in Zhejiang provinces. In addition to a sit-down interview with 100 households, the authors gave a comprehensive physical examination and a blood examination to farmers who applied pesticides most frequently in each household. Findings – This paper indicates that farmers who spray more pesticides are more likely to have headache, nausea and skin problems. Beside these visible effects, this paper also finds that exposure to pesticides has significant invisible impact on farmers' neurological, liver and kidney systems. Originality/value – This, it is believed, is one of the first comprehensive studies to give comprehensive physical examination and blood examination to farmers who applied pesticides most frequently in each household.

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Article provided by Emerald Group Publishing in its journal China Agricultural Economic Review.

Volume (Year): 4 (2012)
Issue (Month): 4 (November)
Pages: 468-484

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Handle: RePEc:eme:caerpp:v:4:y:2012:i:4:p:468-484
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