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Whole-Farm Approaches to a Safety Net


  • Dismukes, Robert
  • Durst, Ron L.


In recent farm policy debates, proposals for a whole-farm revenue safety net program have been put forward that could provide a farm-income safety net for a wide variety of farming activities. These proposals include income- stabilization accounts and whole-farm revenue insurance. Risk protection from income-stabilization accounts would depend on the reserves in individual accounts and the structure of program benefits. Experience with farm savings accounts in Canada and Australia suggests that lack of adequate account balances and buildup of balances beyond the level required for risk management can reduce program effectiveness. Whole-farm revenue insurance could overcome these problems since coverage would not depend on the farmer's ability to build an account balance and benefits would only be realized when the farmer suffers a drop in income. However, the complexity of factors affecting income variability raises questions about the feasibility of a whole-farm insurance plan.

Suggested Citation

  • Dismukes, Robert & Durst, Ron L., 2006. "Whole-Farm Approaches to a Safety Net," Economic Information Bulletin 33893, United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service.
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:uersib:33893
    DOI: 10.22004/ag.econ.33893

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    Cited by:

    1. Hisham S. El-Osta, 2018. "Strategies to Manage Risk and their Role in Impacting Economic Performance among Farm Households," Applied Economics and Finance, Redfame publishing, vol. 5(2), pages 49-64, March.
    2. Meuwissen, Miranda P.M. & Van Asseldonk, Marcel A.P.M. & Pietola, Kyosti & Hardaker, J. Brian & Huirne, Ruud B.M., 2011. "Income insurance as a risk management tool after 2013 CAP reforms?," 2011 International Congress, August 30-September 2, 2011, Zurich, Switzerland 114649, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
    3. Bahrs, Enno & Blanck, Niklas, 2009. "Die Risikoausgleichsrücklage als Instrument des landwirtschaftlichen Risikomanagements," German Journal of Agricultural Economics, Humboldt-Universitaet zu Berlin, Department for Agricultural Economics, vol. 58(04), pages 1-9, May.
    4. -, 2009. "The outlook for agriculture and rural development in the Americas: a perspective on Latin America and the Caribbean, 2009," Coediciones, Naciones Unidas Comisión Económica para América Latina y el Caribe (CEPAL), number 1379 edited by Iica.
    5. Williams, Jeffery R. & Saffert, Andrew T. & Barnaby, G. Art & Llewelyn, Richard V. & Langemeier, Michael R., 2014. "A Risk Analysis of Adjusted Gross Revenue-Lite on Beef Farms," Journal of Agricultural and Applied Economics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 46(2), pages 227-244, May.
    6. Chang, Hung-Hao & Schmit, Todd M. & Boisvert, Richard N. & Tauer, Loren W., 2007. "Quantifying Sources of Dairy Farm Business Risk and Implications for Risk Management Strategies," Working Papers 127012, Cornell University, Department of Applied Economics and Management.


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