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Assessing the Response of Farm Households to Dairy Policy Reform in Israel

  • Kimhi, Ayal
  • Rubin, Ofir D.

After nearly fifty years of stability and stagnation of dairy market regulations in Israel, a dramatic policy reform has been enacted in 1999. The reform enabled farm households, for the first time, to trade production quotas. In addition, the reform signaled to farmers that milk prices will gradually go down in real terms, and therefore only producers who expand and become more efficient will prevail. The reform allowed for generous financial support for investment in expansion, but also required the adoption of environmental regulations which could be costly to many farm families. This paper uses data from a census of small family-operated dairy enterprises that was conducted in 2001, in order to analyze the response of farm households to the reform. The results imply that the reform was particularly attractive for already strong producers. Weaker producers are less attracted by the reform and will likely fade away by default in the long run. Another finding is that intergenerational succession is an important element of decision making of milk producers. Hence, the response of farm households to changes in the economic environment cannot be disentangled from the occupational decisions of their offspring. These findings imply that the desired structural change in the family-farm milk production sector will take much longer than expected, essentially as long as the current generation of producers is around. This requires, perhaps, an extension of the reform period or a change in incentives in favor of the smaller and older producers.

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File URL: http://purl.umn.edu/9948
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Paper provided by American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association) in its series 2007 Annual Meeting, July 29-August 1, 2007, Portland, Oregon TN with number 9948.

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Date of creation: 2007
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Handle: RePEc:ags:aaea07:9948
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  1. Isik, Murat & Khanna, Madhu, 2002. "Stochastic Technology, Risk Preferences And Adoption Of Site-Specific Technologies," 2002 Annual meeting, July 28-31, Long Beach, CA 19858, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
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  3. Khanna, Madhu, 1999. "Sequential Adoption Of Site-Specific Technologies And Its Implications For Nitrogen Productivity: A Double Selectivity Model," 1999 Annual meeting, August 8-11, Nashville, TN 21599, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
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  12. Beghin, John C., 2006. "Evolving Dairy Markets in Asia: Recent Findings and Implications," Staff General Research Papers 12506, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  13. Pat Westhoff & D. Scott Brown & Brian Willott & Daniel Madison & Seth Meyer & John Kruse, 2005. "The Doha Round of the World Trade Organization and Agricultural Markets Liberalization: Impacts on Developing Economies," Review of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 27(3), pages 317-335.
  14. Just, Richard E & Zilberman, David, 1983. "Stochastic Structure, Farm Size and Technology Adoption in Developing Agriculture," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 35(2), pages 307-28, July.
  15. Justin Yifu Lin, 1990. "Education and Innovation Adoption in Agriculture: Evidence from Hybrid Rice in China," UCLA Economics Working Papers 603, UCLA Department of Economics.
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