Distribution of beef cattle in Scotland: How important is agricultural policy?
If one observe aggregated cattle figures for Scotland for more than a century it is possible to perceive that that cattle numbers seem to react strongly to agricultural policy (e.g., livestock subsidies before 1973, UK becoming part to the European Community). The purpose the paper is to provide a regional view of this result, namely whether the same trend can be observed if the analysis is done by Scottish regions. For this purpose, we assembled a panel dataset for 11 Scottish regions for the period 1959 until 2008. We specialised the analysis on beef cattle. We use simple regression techniques to verify whether there have been changes in the regional shares of beef cattle and whether beef cattle numbers in the different regions tend to converge to a steady state value. The results indicate that the data can be broken down into two major periods: before and after the accession to the European Community (EC). Furthermore, in most of the regions, accession implied changes in the regional shares (although shares are very stable over time). In terms of the convergence analysis, it is clear that accession to the EC affected the regional beef cattle steady state values.
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