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Abstract

Some notes prove something ; others disprove something. This one does neither. It merely sketches a simple model of the grazing complex. Of itself, the model is no more than an attempt to specify the more important economic relationships of the grazing complex in an explicit, orderly fashion. Although of undoubted importance, these relationships so far appear to have received little attention. Despite its naivete, the model establishes the virtual impossibility of estimating the parameters ideally needed to specify a profit maximizing system of grazing, even if we assume away climatic and price uncertainty, and the diversity of pasture types, history and location. On the positive side, the model suggests a framework for assessing grazing experiments in terms of their relevance for economic analysis (which, of course, is not to be confused with the simple cost accounting of most agricultural experimenters). Concomitantly, the model gives some clues to the experimental approach needed for the elucidation of the economics of grazing. In illustration, a few examples are presented of the types of experimental design that are perhaps best suited for investigation of the grazing complex.

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