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Characteristics, Costs, and Issues for Organic Dairy Farming

Author

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  • McBride, William D.
  • Greene, Catherine R.

Abstract

Organic milk production has been one of the fastest growing segments of organic agriculture in the United States in recent years. Despite the growing number of organic dairy operations, the characteristics of organic dairy operations and the relative costs of organic and conventional milk production have been difficult to analyze. This study, using 2005 ARMS data for U.S. dairy operations, which include a targeted sample of organic milk producers, examines the structure, costs, and challenges of organic milk production. The analysis addresses economies of size, regional differences, and pasture use in organic milk production and compares organic and conventional milk production costs. The findings suggest that economic forces have made organic operations more like conventional operations and that the future structure of the industry may depend on the interpretation and implementation of new organic pasture rules.

Suggested Citation

  • McBride, William D. & Greene, Catherine R., 2009. "Characteristics, Costs, and Issues for Organic Dairy Farming," Economic Research Report 55952, United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service.
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:uersrr:55952
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    File URL: http://purl.umn.edu/55952
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Manchester, Alden C. & Blayney, Donald P., 2001. "Milk Pricing In The United States," Agricultural Information Bulletins 33612, United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service.
    2. Dimitri, Carolyn & Greene, Catherine R., 2002. "Recent Growth Patterns In The U.S. Organic Foods Market," Agricultural Information Bulletins 33715, United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service.
    3. MacDonald, James M. & O'Donoghue, Erik J. & McBride, William D. & Nehring, Richard F. & Sandretto, Carmen L. & Mosheim, Roberto, 2007. "Profits, Costs, and the Changing Structure of Dairy Farming," Economic Research Report 6704, United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Marasteanu, I. Julia & Jaenicke, Edward C., 2013. "Agglomeration and Spatial Dependence in Certified Organic Operations in the United States," 2013 Annual Meeting, August 4-6, 2013, Washington, D.C. 149551, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
    2. repec:ags:aaea13:150610 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. MacDonald, James M., 2011. "Why Are Farms Getting Larger? The Case Of The U.S," 51st Annual Conference, Halle, Germany, September 28-30, 2011 115361, German Association of Agricultural Economists (GEWISOLA).
    4. Delbridge, Timothy A., 2013. "Threshold Effects in Transition to Organic Dairy Production," 2013 Annual Meeting, August 4-6, 2013, Washington, D.C. 150554, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
    5. Jeffrey Gillespie & Richard Nehring, 2013. "Comparing economic performance of organic and conventional U.S. beef farms using matching samples," Australian Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society, vol. 57(2), pages 178-192, April.
    6. Wolf, Christopher A. & Tonsor, Glynn T. & Olynk, Nicole J., 2011. "Understanding U.S. Consumer Demand for Milk Production Attributes," Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Western Agricultural Economics Association, vol. 36(2), August.
    7. Aimee N. Hafla & Jennifer W. MacAdam & Kathy J. Soder, 2013. "Sustainability of US Organic Beef and Dairy Production Systems: Soil, Plant and Cattle Interactions," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 5(7), pages 1-26, July.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    dairy; organic; milk production; costs of production; pasture; Agricultural Resource Management Survey (ARMS); Agricultural and Food Policy; Crop Production/Industries; Demand and Price Analysis; Production Economics;

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