The economics of pest and production management in small-holder cocoa: lessons from Sulawesi
We examine pest control and production management methods used by farmers in Sulawesi to improve cocoa bean quality and increase income from cocoa. Strategies investigated include those directed at increasing the number and size of cocoa pods, those aimed at reducing hosts for pest transmission, two input-intensive approaches, and the alternative of doing nothing beyond harvesting mature cocoa pods. Using 2005 production data from 600 cocoa farms, we identify factors correlated with adoption of each treatment and, controlling for treatment, isolate factors that influence cocoa yields. To study the conditional profitability of input allocation, we compare observed factor shares with profit-maximising input levels and derive lessons for extension efforts. We conclude that the average increase in private returns arising from more intensive cocoa management appears sufficient to compensate for higher production costs, but that observed extension efforts have not been correlated with higher profits among farmers in the sample.
Volume (Year): 45 (2009)
Issue (Month): 3 ()
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