Department of Agribusiness and Markets

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Now showing 1 - 5 of 167
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    The emergence of plastic-free grocery shopping: Understanding opportunities for practice transformation
    (Elsevier Ltd., 2024-01-01) Kemper, JA; Spotswood, F; White, Samantha
    Despite consumer concern for sustainability, avoiding plastic packaging, particularly in food shopping, is difficult due to its pervasiveness and usefulness. Yet achieving changes in consumer behaviour is an important part of environmental management approaches towards a circular economy and plastic reduction. This research explores how everyday food shopping practices might adapt and evolve to become more sustainable through consumers avoiding, reducing, or replacing plastic packaging in their grocery shopping. This qualitative research, based on eighteen semi-structured interviews with sustainably-oriented consumers, finds that plastic-free shopping practices are challenging for even committed practitioners. However, we illuminate four mechanisms representing ‘bright spots’ (i.e., points of optimism) that offer specific opportunities for environmental management. We define these as destabilisation, envisioning, emotional connection and adaptation. Destabilisation and envisioning help with recruitment of practitioners to plastic-free shopping, and emotional connection and adaptation help support practitioner loyalty and commitment. Further, consumer reflexivity and habituated sustainable-orientation supports practice recruitment, stabilisation and transition. We discuss the implications of our findings for environmental management approaches to ‘behaviour change’, focusing on the role of policy-makers, social marketers, retailers, and manufacturers in fostering competitive, stable plastic-free grocery shopping.
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    The sources of total factor productivity growth, changes in technical efficiency and the threshold effects of herd size on the productivity of New Zealand dairy farms : A thesis submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy at Lincoln University
    (Lincoln University, 2023) Azmi, Zainul
    Many studies have been carried out to analyse dairy farms’ production performance but, for New Zealand, only a limited number have gone beyond the technical efficiency (TE) component of farm productivity. The current study aims to: (1) analyse the regional total factor productivity (TFP) growth and the role of different components, i.e. technological progress, technical efficiency change, and scale effect change in increasing TFP; (2) assess the regional differences in technical efficiency (TE) and the technological gap; and (3) investigate the threshold effects of herd size on the productivity of New Zealand dairy farms. The data for the TFP and TE analysis are unbalanced farm-level panel data from the 2004-05 to 2019-20 seasons, for 2,001 farms and 9,943 observations from the DairyNZ surveys. Farms are grouped into three regions: Region 1 (Northland and West Coast-Tasman); Region 2 (Waikato, Bay of Plenty, Taranaki and Lower North Island); and Region 3 (Marlborough-Canterbury, Otago-Southland). Stochastic frontier models are used to estimate the production functions for three different regions and to calculate the TFP growth. The results indicate heterogeneity in the different areas so a state-of-the-art stochastic meta-frontier approach is used to estimate TEs and technological gap ratios (TGRs). For the threshold analysis, the study uses balanced panel data from the 2015-16 season to the 2019-20 season (1,770 observations). The results suggest that there are different effects of herd size on productivity, and the significance of other inputs and farm-specific variables are evaluated. This study provides empirical evidence of the relative importance of the various components of TFP growth and distinct TE scores in different regions, and provides empirical evidence of the threshold effects of herd size on dairy farms’ productivity.
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    The commodification of Tibetan dance: The experience of ‘Ecological Migrants’ in the Three-River Headwater region of the Qinghai-Tibet plateau : A thesis submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy at Lincoln University
    (Lincoln University, 2023) Ye, Xiaozhen
    Cultural tourism is increasing in China, partly because of the government’s vigorous promotion of this tourism form, and the emergence of a prosperous middle class with time, money and the inclination to travel. In the Three-River Headwater Region of the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau cultural tourism products have emerged strongly since 2000, when the Chinese government implemented an Ecological Resettlement Programme involving the relocation of over 55,000 mainly Tibetan people from their original residence – an area of high ecological value – to newly created villages. In this process of rural change and transition, cultural tourism has been viewed as an industry that can provide the region’s ‘ecological migrants’ with business and employment opportunities, particularly through their ethnic dances, which provide an attractive spectacle for the growing numbers of visiting tourists. This study explores the experiences of a group of ‘ecological migrants’ who are participating in dance performances to identify their perceptions of the impact of the commodification of their dance culture for touristic purposes, both on themselves and their community. Special attention has been given to the process of authenticating dance performance from the perspective of the ‘ecological migrants’. Given the exploratory nature of this study, qualitative social research methods and inductive analytical techniques have been applied. This qualitative study used a combination of in depth interviews (n=34) and field observations to interpret the cultural tourism/Tibetan dance phenomenon in the Three-River Headwater Region of the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau in China, an area known as the Yushu Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture. The study identified three groups of ‘ecological migrants’: village performers from ‘ecological migrant’ villages, profession dancers from two public dance troupes, and community leaders from villages and the dance troupes. The results indicate that the commodification of Tibetan dance in this setting is perceived to generate beneficial outcomes for locals, including employment opportunities and, by extension, a much-needed source of household income, although few had full-time work as dancers. Many rested their hopes on future opportunities in cultural tourism, and specifically dance, supported by local government. Secondly, many participants perceived that cultural tourism, by way of dance performance, was helping to galvanise the community through social interaction and the active creation of new friendships, and a shared sense of identity and belonging. Thirdly, participants were aware that through the process of cultural commodification, a new ‘version’ of Yushu Tibetan dance performance has emerged that meets tourists’ expectations. While this was not viewed negatively, participants differed in their assessment of the authenticity of the dances. Drawing on the theories of “hot” and “cool” authentication (Cohen & Cohen, 2012a), a model of dance commodification has been proposed on the basis of the study’s key findings, with the intention to depict the empirical relationship between two theoretical constructs: authentication and (dis)empowerment. The process of authenticating dance performance is presented in the model from the perspective of the three groups of ‘ecological migrants’. The findings reveal that under the strong political domination (i.e., political disempowerment) in the study region, the authenticity of the ‘ecological migrant’ perfomers’ experience of cultural commodification can be expressed in how they are involved with the dance performance psychologically, socially and economically. Commodification as a process-based concept offers a useful approach to examining the interrelation of authentication and (dis)empowerment, as well as the interaction between “hot” and “cool” authentication within a unique political context. With the identification of the empirical relationship between (dis)empowerment and authentication, this study enables a better understanding of the dynamics of various community groups’ support for tourism, and how various interpretations of authenticity reflect perfomers’ differing levels of empowerment and disempowerment. In short, this study has added to a growing body of literature on cultural commodification, authentication and (dis)empowerment. It contributes new knowledge on dance commodification, and its impact on the ‘ecological migrant’ perfomers in the Three-River Headwater Region of the Qinghai-Tibet plateau.
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    Productive efficiency of beef cattle production in Botswana: A latent class stochastic meta-frontier analysis
    (Frontiers Media S.A., 2023-06-13) Bahta, S; Temoso, O; Ng'ombe, JN; Rich, KM; Baker, D; Kaitibie, Simeon; Malope, P
    Introduction: Efficiency in food production is crucial for sustainable agriculture in developing countries. This paper contributes to the existing literature by presenting an innovative approach to modeling productive efficiency in beef cattle production. Treating farm performance across regions as unobserved heterogeneity, we determine technical efficiency of beef cattle production in Botswana. We aim to shed light on the factors influencing efficiency in this sector. Methods: The study utilized block-level data from various annual agricultural surveys (2006–2014) covering 26 agricultural districts and six agro-ecological regions in Botswana. We employed a latent class stochastic frontier model complemented with the stochastic meta-frontier analysis. Results: Results show that the best performing farming systems in terms of efficiency are districts with well-developed infrastructure and better access to output and input markets. In contrast, the farming systems that perform poorly consist of agricultural districts without access to livestock advisory centers, with higher average temperatures and foot and mouth disease, limiting access to export markets. The mean technical efficiency scores for beef production for agricultural districts in class one and two were 62 and 59%, respectively, implying high potential to improve beef production using the same level of agricultural inputs through efficiency-enhancing investments. Discussion: Based on our results, it is crucial for agricultural policies to prioritize regionally specific investments that address the needs of the under-performing districts. By targeting the lagging districts, policymakers can help beef producers improve their input efficiency and bridge the technological gaps to the meta-frontier. This can be achieved through investments in infrastructure, access to livestock advisory services, and disease control measures. Such efforts will not only enhance the efficiency of beef production but also contribute to the overall sustainability of the agricultural sector in Botswana.
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    Heterogeneous impacts of GlobalGAP adoption on net income in small-scale pineapple farming in Ghana: Does farm size matter?
    (Wiley, 2023-05-13) Annor, PB; Kaitibie, Simeon; Lyne, Michael
    Adoption of Global Good Agricultural Practices (GlobalGAP) improves food quality and safety along fresh produce value chains. However, adoption rates have been low among small-scale pineapple farmers in Ghana, but with possible heterogeneous responses due to farm size economies. This study estimates the impact of GlobalGAP adoption on net incomes earned by small-scale pineapple farmers in Ghana's main producing region, and examines size-induced heterogeneous effects of adoption on income. Household and farm-level data gathered from 546 small-scale farmers were analyzed using a two-stage regression model to estimate the impact of GlobalGAP adoption on per hectare pineapple net income. Robustness of the results was checked by re-estimating the two-stage model using a maximum likelihood extended regression model. GlobalGAP adoption reduced net income on small farms growing less than 1 ha of pineapples, but increased net income on small farms growing more than 1 ha of pineapples. We conclude that GlobalGAP adoption and farm size are not independent determinants of profitability, and recommend that extension and other interventions intended to promote GlobalGAP adoption among pineapple farmers in Ghana should be targeted at those who are willing and able to grow more than 1 ha of pineapples.