Evaluation of IPM adoption and financial instruments to reduce pesticide use in Thai agriculture using econometrics and agent-based modeling

Agricultural commercialization in Asia has led to an increased dependence on synthetic pesticides, especially for high-value fruit and vegetable crops. The present study uses the multi-agent modeling software MPMAS to ex-ante assess the impact of different pesticide use reduction strategies. The model is parameterized with data from an intensive and diverse production systems in the mountainous north of Thailand, where the adoption of cash crops has been accompanied by very high levels of pesticide use. The objective of this study is to compare different policy interventions in terms of their impact on pesticide use, farm incomes and land use. The adoption of integrated pest management (IPM) is assessed in combination with tax instruments and with adoption incentives, such as bio-pesticide subsidies and price premiums. The results show that a smart policy package can reduce pesticide use by up to 34% over five years without income trade-offs for farm households.

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 Record created 2017-04-01, last modified 2018-01-23

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