Perverse supply response in peasant agriculture: A review
The long-running debate concerning the special characteristics of peasant production in less developed countries which may lead to perverse supply responses in their agricultural sectors is explored. Four stages in the debate are identified. The first was based on casual observation and the target income or fixity-of-wants hypothesis. The second took account of peasant own-consumption and focused on the marketed surplus. The third addressed the possible effect of uncertainty and risk aversion on supply response. The fourth is embodied in modern farm household models of peasant behaviour. Although the predictions regarding supply response derived from these models vary, they all suggest that agricultural supply response may be negative. The bulk of empirical evidence, however, for both total production and marketed surplus tends to refute the notion, whether it is theoretically consistent or not, that supply response in peasant agriculture is negative.
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Volume (Year): 27 (1999)
Issue (Month): 2 ()
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