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Bayes Estimates of Time to Organic Certification


  • Hattam, Caroline
  • Holloway, Garth J.


The adoption of organic production has increased dramatically over recent years, especially in less developed countries. However, little information is available about who adopts, the difficulties they face in converting and how these factors vary over time. Using small-scale avocado producers (<15ha) from Michoacán, Mexico as a case study, this paper explores the factors affecting the time-to-adoption of organic production and certification, drawing from five parametric descriptions of the data. These models are implemented using a Bayesian approach and advances in Markov chain Monte Carlo methods. The results indicate that additional sources of income, together with membership of producers associations, higher levels of education and experience of export markets, other than the US, have a positive effect on the adoption decision. Labour requirements and administrative capacity appear to be unimportant, while information sources and the frequency of contact with these sources have a varied, but largely negative effect on the probability of adoption. These findings raise a number of questions about the future of organic production in Mexico and the avocado zone, not least how to overcome credit and information constraints, but more importantly whether aiming for the organic market is a viable production strategy for small-scale producers.

Suggested Citation

  • Hattam, Caroline & Holloway, Garth J., 2007. "Bayes Estimates of Time to Organic Certification," 81st Annual Conference, April 2-4, 2007, Reading University 7979, Agricultural Economics Society.
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:aes007:7979

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Carletto, Calogero & de Janvry, Alain & Sadoulet, Elisabeth, 1999. "Sustainability in the Diffusion of Innovations: Smallholder Nontraditional Agro-Exports in Guatemala," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 47(2), pages 345-369, January.
    2. John W. Cary & Roger L. Wilkinson, 1997. "Perceived Profitability And Farmers' Conservation Behaviour," Journal of Agricultural Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 48(1-3), pages 13-21.
    3. Michael Burton & Dan Rigby & Trevor Young, 1999. "Analysis of the Determinants of Adoption of Organic Horticultural Techniques in the UK," Journal of Agricultural Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 50(1), pages 47-63.
    4. Michael Burton & Dan Rigby & Trevor Young, 2003. "Modelling the adoption of organic horticultural technology in the UK using Duration Analysis," Australian Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society, vol. 47(1), pages 29-54, March.
    5. Kiefer, Nicholas M, 1988. "Economic Duration Data and Hazard Functions," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 26(2), pages 646-679, June.
    6. Lohr, Luanne & Salomonsson, Lennart, 2000. "Conversion subsidies for organic production: results from Sweden and lessons for the United States," Agricultural Economics of Agricultural Economists, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 22(2), March.
    7. Rigby, Dan & Young, Trevor & Burton, Michael, 2001. "The development of and prospects for organic farming in the UK," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 26(6), pages 599-613, December.
    8. Chib S. & Jeliazkov I., 2001. "Marginal Likelihood From the Metropolis-Hastings Output," Journal of the American Statistical Association, American Statistical Association, vol. 96, pages 270-281, March.
    9. Leggesse Dadi & Michael Burton & Adam Ozanne, 2004. "Duration Analysis of Technological Adoption in Ethiopian Agriculture," Journal of Agricultural Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 55(3), pages 613-631.
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    Cited by:

    1. Doris Läpple, 2010. "Adoption and Abandonment of Organic Farming: An Empirical Investigation of the Irish Drystock Sector," Journal of Agricultural Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 61(3), pages 697-714.
    2. Lapple, Doris & Donnellan, Trevor, 2009. "Adoption and Abandonment of Organic Farming: An Empirical Investigation of the Irish Drystock Sector," 83rd Annual Conference, March 30-April 1, 2009, Dublin, Ireland 51062, Agricultural Economics Society.
    3. Zein Kallas & Teresa Serra & José Maria Gil, 2010. "Farmers' objectives as determinants of organic farming adoption: the case of Catalonian vineyard production," Agricultural Economics, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 41(5), pages 409-423, September.
    4. Ahsanuzzaman, Ahsanuzzaman, 2015. "Duration Analysis of Technology Adoption in Bangladeshi Agriculture," 2015 AAEA & WAEA Joint Annual Meeting, July 26-28, San Francisco, California 200406, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association;Western Agricultural Economics Association.
    5. Läpple, Doris & Rensburg, Tom Van, 2011. "Adoption of organic farming: Are there differences between early and late adoption?," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 70(7), pages 1406-1414, May.

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