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Issues in the Economics of Pesticide Use in Agriculture: A Review of the Empirical Evidence


  • Jorge Fernandez-Cornejo
  • Sharon Jans
  • Mark Smith


In this article, we review three perspectives used to place an economic value on pesticide use in agriculture and present associated empirical results. One approach is based on calculations of the marginal productivity; a second strategy considers the expected loss to pests relative to some current or maximum yield; and a third approach, related to the second, calculates the economic effect of banning pesticides, which is effectively the value that producers and consumers place on the chemicals used. We also review the economic effects of government policies to reduce or restrict pesticide use, including regulation and pesticide taxes as well as use of alternative technologies believed to reduce pesticide use, such as integrated pest management and genetically engineered plants.

Suggested Citation

  • Jorge Fernandez-Cornejo & Sharon Jans & Mark Smith, 1998. "Issues in the Economics of Pesticide Use in Agriculture: A Review of the Empirical Evidence," Review of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 20(2), pages 462-488.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:revage:v:20:y:1998:i:2:p:462-488.

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    Cited by:

    1. Adélaïde Fadhuile & Stéphane Lemarié & Alain Pirotte, 2016. "Disaggregating the Demand for Pesticides: Does it Matter?," Canadian Journal of Agricultural Economics/Revue canadienne d'agroeconomie, Canadian Agricultural Economics Society/Societe canadienne d'agroeconomie, vol. 64(2), pages 223-252, June.
    2. Cecilia Bellora & Élodie Blanc & Jean-Marc Bourgeon & Eric Strobl, 2018. "Estimating the Impact of Crop Diversity on Agricultural Productivity in South Africa," NBER Chapters, in: Agricultural Productivity and Producer Behavior, pages 185-215, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Magali Aubert & Geoffroy Enjolras, 2017. "Are EU subsidies a springboard to the reduction of pesticide use?," Post-Print hal-02733800, HAL.
    4. Cecilia Bellora & Jean-Marc Bourgeon, 2014. "Agricultural Trade, Biodiversity Effects and Food Price Volatility," Working Papers hal-01052971, HAL.
    5. Thomas G. Böcker & Robert Finger, 2017. "A Meta-Analysis on the Elasticity of Demand for Pesticides," Journal of Agricultural Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 68(2), pages 518-533, June.
    6. Jean Marie Codron & Hakan Adanacioglu & Magali Aubert & Zouhair Bouhsina & A. Ait El Mekki & Sylvain Rousset & Selma Tozanli & Murat Yercan, 2012. "Pesticide safety risk management in high value chains: the case of Turkey and Morocco [Gestion du risque sanitaire lié aux pesticides dans les filières à haute valeur ajoutée : le cas de la Turquie," Working Papers hal-02806260, HAL.
    7. Jean-Philippe Boussemart & Hervé Leleu & Oluwaseun Ojo, 2016. "Exploring cost dominance in crop farming systems between high and low pesticide use," Journal of Productivity Analysis, Springer, vol. 45(2), pages 197-214, April.
    8. Magali Aubert & Zouhair Bouhsina & Jean Marie Codron & Sylvain Rousset, 2013. "Pesticide safety risk, food chain organization, and the adoption of sustainable farming practices. The case of Moroccan early tomatoes," Post-Print hal-02806083, HAL.
    9. Asci, Serhat & Yamazaki, Fumiko & Paggi, Mechel, 2016. "Forecasting California Pesticide Demand using PUR Dataset," 2016 Annual Meeting, February 6-9, 2016, San Antonio, Texas 230126, Southern Agricultural Economics Association.
    10. Ben-Haim, Yakov & Osteen, Craig D. & Moffitt, L. Joe, 2013. "Policy dilemma of innovation: An info-gap approach," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 85(C), pages 130-138.
    11. Carpentier, A. & Reboud, X., 2018. "Why farmers consider pesticides the ultimate in crop protection: economic and behavioral insights," 2018 Conference, July 28-August 2, 2018, Vancouver, British Columbia 277528, International Association of Agricultural Economists.
    12. Ridier, Aude & Ben El Ghali, Mohamed & Nguyen, G. & Kephaliacos, Charilaos, 2013. "The role of risk aversion and labor constraints in the adoption of low input practices supported by the CAP green payments in cash crop farms," Review of Agricultural and Environmental Studies - Revue d'Etudes en Agriculture et Environnement (RAEStud), Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique (INRA), vol. 94(2).
    13. Batie, Sandra S. & Swinton, Scott M. & Schulz, Mary A., 1999. "Fqpa Implementation To Reduce Pesticide Residue Risks: Part I: Agricultural Producer Concerns," Staff Paper Series 11813, Michigan State University, Department of Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics.
    14. Fadhuile, A., 2018. "Can we explain pesticide price trend by the regulation changes ?," 2018 Conference, July 28-August 2, 2018, Vancouver, British Columbia 277112, International Association of Agricultural Economists.
    15. Dakpo, K.H. & Vincent, M. & Boussemart, J.-P., 2018. "Spatial aggregation of land uses allocation and pesticide efficiency at landscape level A Multi-ware production approach," 2018 Conference, July 28-August 2, 2018, Vancouver, British Columbia 277258, International Association of Agricultural Economists.

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