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Abstract

Given an equipment complement, a specific crop mix has a probability distribution for whole-farm net returns. Increasing crop acreage while holding the set of equipment constant will reduce fixed costs per acre, but it will also increase the length of time required to complete crucial field operations such as planting and harvesting. Thus, the probability of encountering weather-related delays in fieldwork will increase. This increase in delays may cause a decline in yields and changes in the distribution of net returns. This paper develops a Target MOTAD model capable of capturing intra-year impacts on profit that arise from the timing of planting and harvesting operations as well as inter-year impacts on profits that are due to variations in economic and weather-related factors. The model relies on estimates of available fieldwork time and a crop's harvestable yield in different time periods throughout the harvest season.

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