Will switchgrass as a bio-crop be adopted by the farmers?

Adoption of bio-crops has been suggested as a possible solution to reduce dependence on fossil fuels. Although switchgrass is a potential bio-crop, it is still not adopted by the farmers commercially for energy use. In this study, first an in-depth literature review has been done to analyze some of the important decisive factors which should be considered by farmers before adopting switchgrass as a bio-crop. Then an economic analysis has been done on the risks and returns to the farmers for including switchgrass in the farm mix. This study uses 21 years of experimental yield data for switchgrass, from a long term experiment in Alabama. For economic analysis, two hypothetical sample farms of 400 acres each, with and without switchgrass are compared. The yield and price data are simulated with 1000 iterations and return on investments for different cases are compared for final results. The results show that adoption of switchgrass as a bio-crop can be a viable addition to the farm mix which can both improve profitability as well as reducing profits variability in addition to other benefits.

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

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