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The Role of Cultivated Land Expansion on the Impacts to Global Agricultural Markets from Biofuels


  • Yang, Jun
  • Huang, Jikun
  • Msangi, Siwa
  • Rozelle, Scott
  • Weersink, Alfons


The emergence of biofuels has led to an increase in crop price and subsequently global food prices but the extent of the impact is subject to debate. Fully understanding the role of biofuels on agricultural markets requires properly accounting for the response of all affected inputs and outputs. Previous studies have generally forced the amount of cultivated land, the largest input, to remain fixed regardless of price change. This study overcomes this limitation by setting alternative growth rates in farmland expansion within a general equilibrium model (GTAP-E) with a focus on agricultural and energy markets. The simulation of the model under alternative biofuel policies and market conditions reveals that a fuller utilization of available land resources significantly reduces the rise in feedstock prices brought about by biofuel policies and/or higher energy prices. Implicit land supply price elasticies calculated by the model are consistent with previous studies and lend support to the approach taken within the study.

Suggested Citation

  • Yang, Jun & Huang, Jikun & Msangi, Siwa & Rozelle, Scott & Weersink, Alfons, 2013. "The Role of Cultivated Land Expansion on the Impacts to Global Agricultural Markets from Biofuels," 2013 Annual Meeting, August 4-6, 2013, Washington, D.C. 149614, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:aaea13:149614

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Thomas W. Hertel & Jayson Beckman, 2011. "Commodity Price Volatility in the Biofuel Era: An Examination of the Linkage between Energy and Agricultural Markets," NBER Chapters,in: The Intended and Unintended Effects of U.S. Agricultural and Biotechnology Policies, pages 189-221 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Thaeripour, Farzad & Hertel, Thomas W. & Tyner, Wallace E. & Beckman, Jayson F. & Birur, Dileep K., 2008. "Biofuels and their By-Products: Global Economic and Environmental Implications," 2008 Annual Meeting, July 27-29, 2008, Orlando, Florida 6452, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
    3. Kanlaya J. Barr & Bruce A. Babcock & Miguel A. Carriquiry & Andre M. Nassar & Leila Harfuch, 2011. "Agricultural Land Elasticities in the United States and Brazil," Applied Economic Perspectives and Policy, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 33(3), pages 449-462.
    4. Tian, Yishui & Zhao, Lixin & Meng, Haibo & Sun, Liying & Yan, Jinyue, 2009. "Estimation of un-used land potential for biofuels development in (the) People's Republic of China," Applied Energy, Elsevier, vol. 86(Supplemen), pages 77-85, November.
    5. Thomas W. Hertel & Wallace E. Tyner & Dileep K. Birur, 2010. "The Global Impacts of Biofuel Mandates," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Number 1), pages 75-100.
    6. Huang, Jikun & Yang, Jun & Msangi, Siwa & Rozelle, Scott & Weersink, Alfons, 2012. "Biofuels and the poor: Global impact pathways of biofuels on agricultural markets," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 37(4), pages 439-451.
    7. Barr, Kanlaya Jintanakul, 2011. "Agricultural Land Elasticities in the United States and Brazil," Staff General Research Papers Archive 34893, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
    8. Martin Banse & Hans van Meijl & Andrzej Tabeau & Geert Woltjer, 2008. "Will EU biofuel policies affect global agricultural markets?," European Review of Agricultural Economics, Foundation for the European Review of Agricultural Economics, vol. 35(2), pages 117-141, June.
    9. Christopher B. Barrett & Jau Rong Li, 2002. "Distinguishing between Equilibrium and Integration in Spatial Price Analysis," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 84(2), pages 292-307.
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    More about this item


    Biofuels; land supply; markets; International Development; Land Economics/Use; Resource /Energy Economics and Policy; Q11; Q15;

    JEL classification:

    • Q11 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - Aggregate Supply and Demand Analysis; Prices
    • Q15 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - Land Ownership and Tenure; Land Reform; Land Use; Irrigation; Agriculture and Environment

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