Land rental market, off-farm employment and agricultural production in Southeast China: A plot-level case study
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SourceChina Economic Review - Kidlington, 21, 4, (2010), pp. 598-606
Article / Letter to editor
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SW OZ RSCR CAOS
China Economic Review - Kidlington
SubjectAnthropology and Development Studies
This paper performs a plot-level analysis of the impact of land rental market participation and off-farm employment on land investment, input use, and rice yields for 215 plots cultivated by 52 households in three villages in Northeast Jiangxi Province. Our findings show that households that rent extra land are relatively more productive, but contradict results of earlier studies which found that tenure status of plots affects the level of land investments. We further find that off-farm employment does not significantly affect rice yields. This result contradicts those of earlier studies which found that the negative lost-labor effect of off-farm employment dominates the positive income effect. Another novel finding is that people working locally off-farm tend to switch from green manure planting towards the use of organic manure on their rice plots. We conclude that policies that will further stimulate the development of land rental markets, which is still in its infancy, can contribute significantly to higher rice production in Southeast China. Another implication of our results is that worries about the negative impact that the continuously growing off-farm employment may have on China's goal to remain self-sufficient in grain production are less relevant at the moment for the region examined in our study.
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