Farm Management Implications of Transitioning from Conventional to Organic Production: An Application of Whole-Farm Linear Programming Model to Examine Transition Period

Over the past decade, organic farming has gained popularity among both consumers and producers. As producers consider the decision to shift from conventional to organic production, the farm management question asks under what price ratios can farmers be enticed to endure transition periods. Current rules require at least three years of organic production before the crop can be marketed as ‘organic’. Using a whole-farm linear programming (LP) model, these ‘non-productive’ transition years were modeled to examine the conditions that entice farmers to convert from conventionally grown corn. Results assist producers in making long term decisions with the objective to maximize returns to their operations. The LP base farm was parameterized using a central Illinois farm including local information on 1) production practices for a corn and soybean rotation, 2) yield penalties for plant and harvest date combinations, and 3) fieldwork probabilities. Preliminary results indicate that given expected price ratios of conventional commodities relative to a $11/bu organic corn price, producers would be willing to begin organic production.

Issue Date:
Jan 17 2018
Publication Type:
Conference Paper/ Presentation

 Record created 2018-01-18, last modified 2018-01-22

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