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Full-Text Articles in Social and Behavioral Sciences

Essays On Fall Fertilizer Application, Mira Nurmakhanova Jan 2008

Essays On Fall Fertilizer Application, Mira Nurmakhanova

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Increased use of nitrogen fertilizer in agricultural production has contributed to increased food production but also contributed to elevated concentration levels of nitrates in groundwater and surface water. High concentration levels of nitrates in drinking water supplied from groundwater and surface water have become a public concern because of their risks to human health.;One way to reduce nitrogen losses is to develop and apply technologies that enable farmers to more accurately match the amount and timing of fertilizer application to crop growth needs. It is best to apply nitrogen as close as possible to when crop needs it most ...


Peasant Communities, The First Link Of The Commodity Chain Of Vicuña Fiber, Liliana L. Lay Lisung Jan 2008

Peasant Communities, The First Link Of The Commodity Chain Of Vicuña Fiber, Liliana L. Lay Lisung

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Vicuna fiber has a high value in the textile and fashion industry and is seen on the runways of the most selective and luxurious clothing designers in Europe. However, the vicuna fiber process and commodity chain are little known. This thesis presents the commodity chain of vicuna fiber and the positive and negative impacts that vicuna fiber commercialization generates in Peruvian peasant communities. The research, based on in-depth interviews and document analysis, studies the development of this buyer-driven chain, the social actors' roles, and the policies and legislation implemented to preserve vicuna species. In response to consumption demands, the marketing ...


Identity Preservation & Traceability: The State Of The Art - From A Grain Perspective (Status Of Agricultural Quality Systems / Traceability / Certification Systems), Gregory Scott Bennet Jan 2008

Identity Preservation & Traceability: The State Of The Art - From A Grain Perspective (Status Of Agricultural Quality Systems / Traceability / Certification Systems), Gregory Scott Bennet

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

A descriptive paper on the state of identity preservation and traceability (IPT) as it relates domestically and internationally to food safety and economics. While not exhaustive, it is illustrative of trends. Identity preservation and traceability (IPT) are not new concepts; however, the growth of public and business interest and concerns regarding them has grown tremendously during the past decade due to many events, which has resulted in these concepts joining together within a single concept (with the same title). This paper, while attempting to be thorough, will highlight the major systems of IPT from a US business perspective. Before and ...


Alternative Approaches For Sharing Machinery, Labor, And Other Resources Among Small- And Medium-Sized Agricultural Producers, Greg Colson Jan 2008

Alternative Approaches For Sharing Machinery, Labor, And Other Resources Among Small- And Medium-Sized Agricultural Producers, Greg Colson

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

As the U.S. agriculture industry continues to become increasingly concentrated, the viability of small- and medium-sized farms faced with diminishing profit margins per unit of output hinges in part on their ability to expand operations. In this study, the solution to this problem of taking advantage of economies of scale through farm-level resource sharing arrangements is considered. Through a two phase data collection procedure, Midwestern farmer groups engaged in resource sharing arrangements were identified and investigated through a case study approach. Evidence from the case studies suggest that sharing of equipment and labor can yield not only financial benefits ...


Three Essays On Agricultural Risk And Insurance, Li Zhang Jan 2008

Three Essays On Agricultural Risk And Insurance, Li Zhang

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

The general theme of this dissertation is agricultural risk and insurance in the United States. Chapter 2 examines welfare effects of the 2002 farm bill programs and yield insurance as well as their impacts on acreage decision of a representative Iowa farmer. Instead of measuring welfare using expected utility to capture farmers' preferences over risky alternatives, we apply recent advances in decision theory and use prospect theory to measure welfare changes due to government programs. The results indicate that there is no policy distortion to farmers' acreage decisions and farmers' willingness to pay per dollar of program cost is greatest ...


A Simulation Model Evaluating Costs Of Bovine Viral Diarrhea Virus (Bvdv) For A Typical U.S. Cow-Calf Producer And Benefits Of Multiple Test And Cull Strategies, Kelsey James Wittenberger Jan 2007

A Simulation Model Evaluating Costs Of Bovine Viral Diarrhea Virus (Bvdv) For A Typical U.S. Cow-Calf Producer And Benefits Of Multiple Test And Cull Strategies, Kelsey James Wittenberger

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Increasingly, veterinarian organizations in the United States recommend the control and eradication of Bovine Viral Diarrhea Virus (BVDV). Cow-calf producers comprise 35% of U.S. cattle; however, research on the effects of BVDV in these herds is limited. To gain a better understanding of the pathology of BVDV in cow-calf producers, a stochastic simulation model was developed in C++ to measure epidemiological and financial outcomes. Additional simulations were run to evaluate changes in producer profit for several test and cull strategies. Introducing a PI animal decreased profit by an average of {dollar}13,971 over 10 years. When a second ...


Hacia El Ranchito: Mexican Immigrants, Farming And Sustainable Rural Livelihoods In Iowa, Hannah Kathryn Lewis Jan 2007

Hacia El Ranchito: Mexican Immigrants, Farming And Sustainable Rural Livelihoods In Iowa, Hannah Kathryn Lewis

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Latinos are the fastest growing ethnicity of farmers in Iowa and across the U.S., and 3.7 percent of Iowa's total population. This case study of four Mexican immigrant farmers explores why and how they farm in Iowa, and how agricultural institutions can support them. I conducted in-depth interviews and observation, using the Sustainable Rural Livelihoods framework in analysis. These farmers learned as children to tend livestock and butcher animals for home consumption. Each bought a small Iowa farmstead by assembling social, human and limited financial capital. They work off-farm fulltime, while on-farm producing meat, dairy, and/or ...


Evaluating The Conservation Security Program Utilizing The Perceptions And Economics Of Producer Participation: Implications For Land Stewardship In Iowa Agriculture, Denis Andrew Reich Jan 2007

Evaluating The Conservation Security Program Utilizing The Perceptions And Economics Of Producer Participation: Implications For Land Stewardship In Iowa Agriculture, Denis Andrew Reich

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Agriculture in the United States (US) has been the focus of a number of studies that address the link between on-farm agricultural practices and the degradation of natural resources. The mounting body of evidence that associates certain cropping and grazing practices with soil and waterway damage points to a need for federal agricultural policy to provide improved conservation incentives for agricultural producers. This study focuses on the first two years of the Conservation Security Program (CSP) in Iowa, a watershed based conservation program introduced with the 2002 Federal Farm Act. This new "green payment" program emphasizes "rewarding the best" stewards ...


Three Essays On Risk And Uncertainty In Agriculture, Nicholas David Paulson Jan 2007

Three Essays On Risk And Uncertainty In Agriculture, Nicholas David Paulson

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

The general theme of this dissertation is risk and uncertainty in agriculture, with each chapter addressing a specific topic related to agricultural risk and uncertainty. Chapter 2 examines the effects of production uncertainty on the types of contract structures used in specialty grain markets. A theoretical model of a contractual relationship between a monopsonistic processor and risk-neutral producers is presented. Two common contract structures, and their resulting effects on the sharing of production risk between buyer and seller, are compared. The spatial structure of yields and farm-level yield volatility are shown to have significant impacts on the processor's preferred ...


Trade-Off Between Cost Of Traceability Within A Small And Large Commercial Meat Plant And Economic Benefits Of Reducing The Number Of Recalls And Size Of Recalls, Bryan Lindley Jan 2007

Trade-Off Between Cost Of Traceability Within A Small And Large Commercial Meat Plant And Economic Benefits Of Reducing The Number Of Recalls And Size Of Recalls, Bryan Lindley

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Is the benefit of reducing the size or probability of a recall worth the cost of the system? Recalls have the potential to incur large cost associated with loss of product, negative publicity, and legal judgments. A model including the cost of traceability, probability that a recall occurs, costs associated with a recall, and severity of recall events is simulated using a random draw of probability and average size from a given distribution for both a 400 head per day and a 5,000 head per day beef plant. For a small plant, it was estimated that the reduction in ...


Three Essays On Contract Farming In China, Jianhua Zhu Jan 2007

Three Essays On Contract Farming In China, Jianhua Zhu

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Contract farming in China has grown rapidly over the past 10 years. The first part of this dissertation examines the evolution of contract farming, and explores the incentives to engage in contract farming, preferred contract provisions, and contract performance from the perspective of both Chinese farmers and contracting firms. Firm and household perceptions of contracting are assessed using data obtained from village and firm level surveys. Farmers identify price stability and market access as the key advantages to contracts, while firms consider improved product quality as the primary incentive to use contracts.;In Part II, the survey data are used ...


Incentives And Contract Design: A Case Study Of Farmland Lease Contracts In Us Agriculture , Keita Fukunaga Jan 2006

Incentives And Contract Design: A Case Study Of Farmland Lease Contracts In Us Agriculture , Keita Fukunaga

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

In this dissertation, I have studied farmland lease contracts in U.S. agriculture. Using the data from the 1999 Agricultural Economics and Land Ownership Survey, I investigated the empirical determinants of contract design from the perspective of the principal-agent framework, which emphasizes the role of incentives. In the empirical analyses, I found evidence that incentives indeed play an important role in contract design. In chapter 2, I investigated the role of risk, transaction costs, and endogenous matching between the landlord and tenant in contract choice. I found that both risk and transaction costs affect contract choice. Furthermore, I found evidence ...


Poverty And Food Insecurity In Rural Iowa: An Examination Of Four Food Desert Counties , Ella Annette Bitto Jan 2005

Poverty And Food Insecurity In Rural Iowa: An Examination Of Four Food Desert Counties , Ella Annette Bitto

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Pockets of poverty are found throughout rural Iowa. Rural America is comprised of people with varying backgrounds who much make their livelihoods in a society that is increasingly a part of a global village. Living in Iowa, called by many the breadbasket of the world, does not necessarily mean that everyone will have equal access to food. In fact, over 46,600 Iowans between 2001--2003 experienced some form of poverty and 9.4 percent were defined as food insecure. This dissertation examines the economic structure of Iowa's counties to determine how agriculture and local business influence per capita income ...


Investment In The Stock Market And Value-Added Agricultural Businesses As Portfolio Investment Alternatives To Farm Expansion, Joshua David Roe Jan 2005

Investment In The Stock Market And Value-Added Agricultural Businesses As Portfolio Investment Alternatives To Farm Expansion, Joshua David Roe

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

In the past decade, farmers have increasingly invested in value-added agriculture. Analysis of these investments compared to farm expansion by farmers was conducted from a portfolio optimization standpoint. Farms with similar investment patterns were identified by cluster analysis. When individual farm characteristics were analyzed to determine how these attributes affected investment choices, clear influences were found. In general, value-added agricultural investments were found to be an efficient investment alternative to farm expansion. Because of their larger risk, stock market investments play a smaller role in an optimized producer portfolio.


Three Essays On Rural Economic Growth , Georgeanne Michael Artz Jan 2005

Three Essays On Rural Economic Growth , Georgeanne Michael Artz

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

This dissertation is a collection of three papers, each analyzing a particular issue related to economic growth in rural America. The first paper explores the problem of defining rural and the implications for measuring rural growth. It discusses the sample selection problem inherent in using classification methods based on population that change over time. Fast growing rural areas grow out of their rural status, so using the most recent definition of rural in an analysis of growth excludes the most successful places. The findings demonstrate that average economic performance of the areas remaining rural significantly understates the true performance of ...


Insuring Uncertainty In Value-Added Agriculture: Ethanol, Nicholas David Paulson Jan 2004

Insuring Uncertainty In Value-Added Agriculture: Ethanol, Nicholas David Paulson

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

A wide variety of insurance products are currently available for agricultural producers to insure against yield or price risks in the markets for the raw commodities they produce. Value-added enterprises, such as ethanol production, have become increasingly popular among farmers over the last decade; however, insurance against declines in the value-added portion of their crops is not yet available. This paper outlines the development of an insurance product aimed at corn producers who are members of an ethanol production cooperative. The product mimics the gross margin level of a typical ethanol production facility, and has the potential to provide producers ...


The Economic Potential Of Switchgrass As A Viable Biofuel Alternative, Jennifer E. Reutzel Jan 2004

The Economic Potential Of Switchgrass As A Viable Biofuel Alternative, Jennifer E. Reutzel

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

To be commercially viable as a bioenergy feedstock, switchgrass must be cost-competitive. Switchgrass production and delivery costs are calculated for the Chariton Valley Switchgrass Biomass Project located in the Chariton Valley, Iowa. Sensitivity analyses are performed to determine which variables have the greatest impact on cost. Switchgrass production costs would require higher than expected market prices, and therefore various incentive payment options are considered. The incentive payments attempt to encapsulate the positive environmental attributes from the production of switchgrass as well as using switchgrass as a clean energy coal substitute. A modified CRP payment, carbon payment, and green tag payment ...


The Impact Of Improved Nutrition On Labor Productivity And Gdp Growth Rate In Low- And Middle-Income Countries, Majd Abdulla Jan 2004

The Impact Of Improved Nutrition On Labor Productivity And Gdp Growth Rate In Low- And Middle-Income Countries, Majd Abdulla

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

This study examined the effects of nutrition on the growth rate of country economies over time. Previous studies on this topic have resulted in debates among researchers over how significant nutritional effects are on individual country economies. For this study, data were collected for four decades (1960s, 1970, 1980s, and 1990s) for 43 low- and middle-income countries. The data were analyzed to determine the effect of nutrition, represented by dietary energy supply (DES), on the growth rate of gross domestic product (GDP) per worker and on labor productivity. The research utilized ordinary least squares, instrumental variables, and random effects regressions ...


A Statistical Regression Model To Determine Financial Cash Flow For Wind Energy Based On Tax Structure, Matthew Dae Joong Ritsema Jan 2004

A Statistical Regression Model To Determine Financial Cash Flow For Wind Energy Based On Tax Structure, Matthew Dae Joong Ritsema

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

A financial cash flow for wind turbines is based on an energy entity's tax structure. Using statistical regression of various wind turbines and wind maps, a theoretical model for energy output was calculated. The turbines were separated by the rated size of the turbine. With the theoretical model, financial output was generated for four different types of tax structures. A total of eight test cases were simulated. Special consideration was given to the impact of Production Tax Credits (PTC) and Renewable Energy Production Incentives (REPI). The object is to determine what type of business and tax structure would have ...


Supply Chain Management Of Differentiated Agricultural Products Under Imperfect Information , Miguel Alberto Carriquiry Jan 2004

Supply Chain Management Of Differentiated Agricultural Products Under Imperfect Information , Miguel Alberto Carriquiry

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Participants in a supply chain of agricultural value added products face two significant challenges. First, many of the costly distinctive traits being desired by consumers are difficult (if not impossible) to observe even after consumption. In order for markets for these classes of goods to develop, firms touting the quality of the product need to be trusted. Hence, maintaining an excellent reputation is essential for firms to keep their customers' good will. Secondly, production is conducted in an environment of yield uncertainty, making it impossible for producers and processors to predict with certainty either the quantity or the quality of ...


The Food Chain Of Sheep And Policy Implications On The Sheep Sector In Syria In Highlight Of International Arrangements, Samir Grad Jan 2004

The Food Chain Of Sheep And Policy Implications On The Sheep Sector In Syria In Highlight Of International Arrangements, Samir Grad

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

The sheep sector in Syria is considered as one of the most important sectors in animal production because it is the first source of meat, the second source of milk, and an export-oriented sector. Therefore, the need has emerged to study its supply chain in order to identify its weaknesses and bottlenecks and make suggestions for improvement. Accordingly, the theoretical background of food marketing is briefly presented including the functions and tools used by analyzing the marketing process. Hereby, the focus is on the approaches used by analyzing the food chains from various perspectives. In this context, the major actors ...


A Stochastic Model Of Maize Gene Dispersal, David G. Ripplinger Jan 2003

A Stochastic Model Of Maize Gene Dispersal, David G. Ripplinger

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

The spatial distribution of maize genes is predicted using a two dimensional Lagrangian stochastic (LS) model that meets sub-inertial and well-mixed conditions. Using wind data from central Iowa, a Weibull distribution is fit. From this distribution, a series of Monte Carlo simulations are run using the LS model in three forms. The final two forms of the model are based on USDA regulations for the production of pharmaceutical producing corn, demonstrating the model's suitability for analyzing the risk of transgene dispersal in maize. Special considerations are given to the large size of maize pollen, the likelihood of pollen seepage ...


Second Moment Characterization Of Agricultural Export And Income Projection Models, Andrew Dean Miller Jan 2003

Second Moment Characterization Of Agricultural Export And Income Projection Models, Andrew Dean Miller

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Agricultural outlook baseline projections published by FAPRI, USDA and the OECD are intended as policy analysis tools. It is shown that projections have been used as forecasts. Therefore, users of baseline projections need information about the past performance of baseline projections. This thesis measures the projection errors of baseline projections using RMSE and MAPE and assesses the ability of models to predict directional movements. The baseline model results are compared to corresponding results of naive models. For projection errors, a mixed model is used to estimate the mean bias and confidence intervals about the mean. Projections of corn, soybean, wheat ...


Investment Analysis Of Deferring A Farmer Owned Ethanol Plant: Using Real Options, Ramanathan Shunmugavelu Jan 2003

Investment Analysis Of Deferring A Farmer Owned Ethanol Plant: Using Real Options, Ramanathan Shunmugavelu

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

A farmers owned value-added (FOVA) business is often subject to changes in the political situations. So an investment analysis tool that incorporates uncertainty, such as real options is more appropriate. Application of real options is limited in FOVA businesses. In this thesis, the concept of real options is applied under the framework of a farmer owned ethanol plant. The impact of changes in the policy or political situations on ethanol industry is well known. Farmer investors that are currently interested in investing in an ethanol plant should decide whether it is worthwhile to invest now or wait for a year ...


An Economic Perspective On Iowa Farm Diversification In The Twentieth Century, Matthew Edward Miller Jan 2003

An Economic Perspective On Iowa Farm Diversification In The Twentieth Century, Matthew Edward Miller

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

The thesis examines farm-level diversification in Iowa over the past century. Economic theory is employed to propose explanations for observed trends in diversification. The hypothesis says that agricultural production technology has been the driving force behind the emergence of large, highly specialized farms in Iowa. Applications from portfolio theory, the theory of the farm, and agronomics are also utilized to flesh out the theory section. Two indexes, entropy and the Hirschman-Herfindahl index, are constructed using production and price data from the Census of Agriculture. The indices show diversification as relatively constant from 1885 to 1930, after which, a strong specialization ...


Factors Affecting Symbolic And Use Adoption Of Local Foods For Consumers In Black Hawk County, Iowa, Erin M. Tegtmeier Jan 2003

Factors Affecting Symbolic And Use Adoption Of Local Foods For Consumers In Black Hawk County, Iowa, Erin M. Tegtmeier

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

A local food system may be an alternative to the increasingly globalized and concentrated food market and a means to augment the availability of fresh foods, create economically viable options for farmers and enhance the health of local ecosystems. Consumers are a vital component of these systems. Insight into the decision-making process surrounding the purchase of local foods can aid in efforts to build thriving local food systems. Studies on consumer attitudes show that, in general, consumers are aware and supportive of local foods. Abstract or civic factors, such as concern for the environment or food safety, are often identified ...


Contract Design In Soybean Production, Nandini Ramesh Jan 2002

Contract Design In Soybean Production, Nandini Ramesh

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Although there is considerable interest in component pricing of soybeans from both the industry and the academia, it is not commonly observed in the soybean industry. In this thesis, the Principal Agent model is used to design a contract between a processor and grower. The processor provides incentives to growers to produce soybeans with higher components (protein and oil) in them. Under the assumption that growers are risk neutral, a contract is designed where the grower faces all the risk in the production of components. The contract also compensates the grower for the yield drag as a result of production ...


Three Essays On Food Security, Food Demand And Welfare Program Participation , Suwen Pan Jan 2002

Three Essays On Food Security, Food Demand And Welfare Program Participation , Suwen Pan

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

The relationship among food security, food away from home and welfare program participation is examined in the dissertation. Current Population Survey data are used to identify and compare the effects of family structure, income sources, and demographic information on food stamp program participation and food consumption based on different food security status. In addition, Iowa administration data are used to compare the effects of local socioeconomic situation on family investment program participation between rural and non-rural areas. Analysis in the first paper uses a bivariate ordered probit model and the results show that the effects of family structure, income sources ...


Expected Returns From Starting A Large Scale Closed Dairy Cooperative Under Price And Biological Uncertainties , Marty James Dreischmeier Jan 2002

Expected Returns From Starting A Large Scale Closed Dairy Cooperative Under Price And Biological Uncertainties , Marty James Dreischmeier

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

The objective of this paper is to determine if it is economically feasible to form a large-scale closed dairy cooperative in the upper Midwest. Simulations were performed for both price and biological variables to calculate the cash flows for a large-scale closed dairy cooperative over the 1st 10 years of operation. The cash flows were calculated using a farm level financial model that was developed to incorporate the biologically driven production process into the cash flow model. The distribution of returns for the cooperative members were estimated and reported for different starting equity levels and different production growth paths. In ...


Information On Genetically Modified Foods And How It Affects Consumers: Evidence From Experimental Auctions , Matthew Christopher Rousu Jan 2002

Information On Genetically Modified Foods And How It Affects Consumers: Evidence From Experimental Auctions , Matthew Christopher Rousu

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Genetically modified (GM) foods have been at the center of a contentious debate. One side of the debate includes environmental groups like Greenpeace and Friends of the Earth, who are opposed to GM foods---these groups would like GM foods banned, or at the very least they want GM foods to be clearly labeled as such. On the other side of the debate are agribusiness companies like Monsanto and Syngenta, who view GM foods positively. They think GM foods help the environment and could help feed the malnourished. Both groups actively disseminate information on genetically modified foods.;This dissertation reports on ...