The effects of several production/management, price and risk factors upon channel catfish profitability are analyzed with a multiperiod mixed-integer linear programming model. Factors analyzed include pond size and optimal stocking rates, alternate levels and trends in catfish prices, pond production losses and level of family consumption withdrawals. Model results indicate that channel catfish offer the potential to significantly increase farm rates of return while providing an avenue of intensive farm growth, without expanding the land base of the farm. However, the long range financial success of the firm was very sensitive to several of the management and risk factors examined.


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