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On the Efficacy of Contractual Provisions for Processing Tomatoes

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  • Hueth, Brent
  • Ligon, Ethan

Abstract

This paper uses extensive data on production outcomes for processing tomato growers in California to examine the efficacy of explicit incentives observed in grower-processor contracts. Our data include all deliveries of tomatoes to some 51 processors over a period of 7 years in which at least 65 unique types of contracts are employed. Results indicate that incentives account for a significant proportion of observed variation in production outcomes, and that complementarities across different sorts of "incentive instruments" play a prominent role in contract design. Although explicit incentives explain a substantial portion of the variation in production outcomes relative to that which could be explained by incentives (as captured by processor/year fixed effects), there remains considerable variation which might be accounted for by unobserved or implicit incentives. Finally, we control for a quite exhaustive set of factors other than incentive provisions that might conceivably affect expected production outcomes, yet are still left with a substantial amount of unexplained variation.

Suggested Citation

  • Hueth, Brent & Ligon, Ethan, 2003. "On the Efficacy of Contractual Provisions for Processing Tomatoes," 2003 Annual meeting, July 27-30, Montreal, Canada 21990, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:aaea03:21990
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Paarsch, Harry J & Shearer, Bruce, 2000. "Piece Rates, Fixed Wages, and Incentive Effects: Statistical Evidence from Payroll Records," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 41(1), pages 59-92, February.
    2. Edward P. Lazear, 2000. "Performance Pay and Productivity," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(5), pages 1346-1361, December.
    3. Brent Hueth & Ethan Ligon, 2002. "Estimation of an efficient tomato contract," European Review of Agricultural Economics, Foundation for the European Review of Agricultural Economics, vol. 29(2), pages 237-253, June.
    4. Canice Prendergast, 1999. "The Provision of Incentives in Firms," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 37(1), pages 7-63, March.
    5. Brent Hueth & Ethan Ligon, 1999. "Producer Price Risk and Quality Measurement," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 81(3), pages 512-524.
    6. Ichniowski, Casey & Shaw, Kathryn & Prennushi, Giovanna, 1997. "The Effects of Human Resource Management Practices on Productivity: A Study of Steel Finishing Lines," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(3), pages 291-313, June.
    7. Brent Hueth & Ethan Ligon, 1999. "Agricultural Supply Response Under Contract," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 81(3), pages 610-615.
    8. Holmstrom, Bengt & Milgrom, Paul, 1991. "Multitask Principal-Agent Analyses: Incentive Contracts, Asset Ownership, and Job Design," Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 7(0), pages 24-52, Special I.
    9. Wooldridge, Jeffrey M., 1995. "Selection corrections for panel data models under conditional mean independence assumptions," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 68(1), pages 115-132, July.
    10. Ivilina Popova & Joseph G. Haubrich, 1998. "Executive compensation: a calibration approach," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 12(3), pages 561-581.
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    Cited by:

    1. Wu, Steven Y., 2006. "Contract theory and agricultural policy analysis: a discussion and survey of recent developments," Australian Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society, vol. 50(4), December.
    2. Just, David R. & Wu, Steven Y., 2005. "Loss Aversion and Reference Points in Contracts," SCC-76 Meeting, March 31-April 2, 2005, Myrtle Beach, SC 28727, SCC-76: Economics and Management of Risk in Agriculture and Natural Resources.
    3. MacDonald, James M. & Perry, Janet E. & Ahearn, Mary Clare & Banker, David E. & Chambers, William & Dimitri, Carolyn & Key, Nigel D. & Nelson, Kenneth E. & Southard, Leland W., 2004. "Contracts, Markets, and Prices: Organizing the Production and Use of Agricultural Commodities," Agricultural Economics Reports 34013, United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service.

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    Crop Production/Industries;

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