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Crop Yield Skewness Under Law of Minimum Technology

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  • Hennessy, David A.

Abstract

No satisfactory motivation has been forwarded in favor of any crop yield distribution, including thenormal. This article explores the foundations of yield distributions for the Law of the Minimum resourceconstraint technology at the plot level of analysis.With independent, identical, uniform resourceavailability distributions the yield skew is positive, whereas it is negative whenever the distributionsare normal. Simulations show how asymmetries in resource availabilities determine skewness. It issuggested that a negative yield skew occurs whenever production is tightly controlled so that the lefttails of some resources availabilities distributions are thin. Irrigation may increase yield skewness.

Suggested Citation

  • Hennessy, David A., 2012. "Crop Yield Skewness Under Law of Minimum Technology," Staff General Research Papers Archive 35018, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:isu:genres:35018
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    File URL: http://www2.econ.iastate.edu/papers/p15018-2012-03-29.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Richard E. Just & Quinn Weninger, 1999. "Are Crop Yields Normally Distributed?," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 81(2), pages 287-304.
    2. Bruce J. Sherrick & Fabio C. Zanini & Gary D. Schnitkey & Scott H. Irwin, 2004. "Crop Insurance Valuation under Alternative Yield Distributions," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 86(2), pages 406-419.
    3. Joseph Atwood & Saleem Shaik & Myles Watts, 2002. "Can Normality of Yields Be Assumed for Crop Insurance?," Canadian Journal of Agricultural Economics/Revue canadienne d'agroeconomie, Canadian Agricultural Economics Society/Societe canadienne d'agroeconomie, vol. 50(2), pages 171-184, July.
    4. Octavio A. Ramirez & Sukant Misra & James Field, 2003. "Crop-Yield Distributions Revisited," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 85(1), pages 108-120.
    5. David A. Hennessy, 2009. "Crop Yield Skewness Under Law of the Minimum Technology," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 91(1), pages 197-208.
    6. Robert G. Chambers & Erik Lichtenberg, 1996. "A Nonparametric Approach to the von Liebig-Paris Technology," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 78(2), pages 373-386.
    7. Alan P. Ker & Barry K. Goodwin, 2000. "Nonparametric Estimation of Crop Insurance Rates Revisited," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 82(2), pages 463-478.
    8. Joseph Atwood & Saleem Shaik & Myles Watts, 2003. "Are Crop Yields Normally Distributed? A Reexamination," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 85(4), pages 888-901.
    9. Charles B. Moss & J. S. Shonkwiler, 1993. "Estimating Yield Distributions with a Stochastic Trend and Nonnormal Errors," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 75(4), pages 1056-1062.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    beta-normal distribution; crop insurance; Liebig technology; limiting factors; order statistics; reliability; weakest-link;

    JEL classification:

    • O32 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Management of Technological Innovation and R&D
    • Q12 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - Micro Analysis of Farm Firms, Farm Households, and Farm Input Markets
    • Q15 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - Land Ownership and Tenure; Land Reform; Land Use; Irrigation; Agriculture and Environment
    • Q16 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - R&D; Agricultural Technology; Biofuels; Agricultural Extension Services

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