Date of Graduation

5-2012

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science in Agricultural Economics (MS)

Degree Level

Graduate

Department

Agricultural Economics and Agribusiness

Advisor

Eric J. Wailes

Committee Member

Bruce L. Dixon

Second Committee Member

Francesco Di Iacovo

Keywords

Health and environmental sciences; Biological sciences; Agri-environmental policy; Logistic model; Multifunctional agriculture; Rice

Abstract

Multifunctional agriculture is particularly fundamental to some working lands conservation policies and programs, such as the Environmental Quality Incentive Program (EQIP), Conservation Security Program (CSP) and Wildlife Habitat Incentive Program (WHIP). Farmers can also be engaged in providing recreational and agri-tourism services such as hunting, fishing, bird-watching, farm tours, petting zoos and hospitality services. Using the Agricultural Resource Management Survey (ARMS) we analyze factors associated with participation in conservation, recreation and agri-tourism activities as a function of farm structure, farm financial measures, production practices, and socio-demographic characteristics of the farm operator. To estimate the functional relationships we estimate a binary logistic model where the dependent variable takes a value equal to one if the farm operator reports in the ARMS survey participation in conservation programs, recreation or agritourism. Results show that the level of farm operator education and cultural practices that use conservation technical assistance are significant at the 0.01 and 0.10 levels, respectively, in explaining participation. Farm financial characteristics were not significant. Location (state where operator is located) is also not significant.

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