Production risk, pesticide use and GM crop technology in South Africa
Technology involving genetic modification of crops has the potential to make a contribution to rural poverty reduction in many developing countries. Thus far, pesticide-producing Bacillus thuringensis (Bt) varieties of cotton have been the main GM crops under cultivation in developing nations. Several studies have evaluated the farm-level performance of Bt varieties in comparison to conventional ones by estimating production technology, and have mostly found Bt technology to be very successful in raising output and/or reducing pesticide input. However, the production risk properties of this technology have not been studied, although they are likely to be important to risk-averse smallholders. This study investigates the output risk aspects of Bt technology by estimating two 'flexible risk' production function models allowing technology to independently affect the mean and higher moments of output. The first is the popular Just-Pope model and the second is a more general 'damage control' flexible risk model. The models are applied to cross-sectional data on South African smallholders, some of whom used Bt varieties. The results show no evidence that a 'risk-reduction' claim can be made for Bt technology. Indeed, there is some evidence to support the notion that the technology increases output risk, implying that simple (expected) profit computations used in past evaluations may overstate true benefits.
If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.
Volume (Year): 40 (2008)
Issue (Month): 19 ()
|Contact details of provider:|| Web page: http://www.tandfonline.com/RAEC20|
|Order Information:||Web: http://www.tandfonline.com/pricing/journal/RAEC20|
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:taf:applec:v:40:y:2008:i:19:p:2489-2500. 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: (Michael McNulty)
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 references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link 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 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.