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Causes Of Instability In Cereal Production In Ethiopia


  • Alemu, Zerihun Gudeta


In Ethiopia, average cereal production between the period 1990 and 2000 did not change significantly compared to the period between 1974 and 1990. However, cereal production between the period 1990 and 2000 was characterized by significant instability. This study reviews literature on factors with potential impact on instability in cereal production in Ethiopia and applies descriptive and variance decomposition procedures to determine the sources of increased instability in cereal production. It was found that production instability was caused more by increased yield instability than instability in an area. Yield instability could be the result of changes in technology, changes in policy and changes in weather conditions. It was concluded by this study that instability regarding yield was predominantly the result of weather variability. This is because, in Ethiopia, rainfall fluctuating from the long-term average is becoming more common, the use of high-powered inputs is limited to a small number of farmers, production is at subsistence level, and farmers' responsiveness to policy changes is constrained by infrastructural, institutional and the existing land policy.

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  • Alemu, Zerihun Gudeta, 2005. "Causes Of Instability In Cereal Production In Ethiopia," Working Paper Series 28073, University of the Free State, Department of Agricultural Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:ufstwp:28073

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    1. Beveridge, Stephen & Nelson, Charles R., 1981. "A new approach to decomposition of economic time series into permanent and transitory components with particular attention to measurement of the `business cycle'," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 7(2), pages 151-174.
    2. Webb, Patrick & von Braun, Joachim & Yohannes, Yisehac, 1992. "Famine in Ethiopia: policy implications of coping failure at national and household levels," Research reports 92, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    3. Jaeger,William K., 1991. "The impact of policy in African agriculture : an empirical investigation," Policy Research Working Paper Series 640, The World Bank.
    4. Dessalegn, Gebremeskel & Jayne, Thomas S. & Shaffer, James D., 1998. "Market Structure, Conduct, and Performance: Constraints of Performance of Ethiopian Grain Markets," Food Security Collaborative Working Papers 55597, Michigan State University, Department of Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics.
    5. Ellis,Frank, 1992. "Agricultural Policies in Developing Countries," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521395847.
    6. Demeke, Mulat & Kelly, Valerie A. & Jayne, Thomas S. & Said, Ali & Le Vallee, Jean-Charles & Chen, H., 1998. "Agricultural Market Performance and Determinants of Fertilizer Use in Ethiopia," Food Security Collaborative Working Papers 55599, Michigan State University, Department of Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics.
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