On-farm weather risk management in suckler cow farms: A recursive discrete stochastic programming approach

Currently France wants to introduce a weather risk management framework into its agricultural policy for livestock farming. The aim of this paper is to better understand how on-farm risk reducing strategies modify the production system and profit distribution of French suckler cow enterprises. We present in this paper an original bioeconomic model that takes into account both risk anticipation and risk adjustments and that details biotechnical relationships between the different components of the beef cattle production system and their dynamics. On-farm risk management strategies are endogeneized under weather uncertainty and tested on real observed weather sequences. We simulate four scenarios characterized by different risk aversions and feed prices. Results emphasized that production adjustments, particularly the adjustments of area of grassland harvested and the possibility to purchase substitutes to on-farm forage production, improve farmers profit under weather variability. However, limiting the amplitude of these adjustments helps decreasing profit variability. All simulated long term decisions associated to risk reducing strategies encompass a reduction of long term stocking rate and the constitution of feed stocks. The impact of hay feed price on the market has similar effects on the long term strategy.

Issue Date:
Sep 02 2011
Publication Type:
Conference Paper/ Presentation
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