266 research outputs found

    Estimated Contribution of Four Biotechnologies to New Zealand Agriculture

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    The impact of biotechnology is an important consideration for New Zealand. The country depends significantly on agricultural production and exports (Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry, 2004), and has relied in part on modern biotechnology for productivity increases over the last 20 years (Evenson & Gollin, 2003; Jacobsen & Scobie, 1999; Ovenden, Anderson, Armstrong, & Mitchel, 1985). A recent survey of individuals in agriculture and biotechnology generated a comprehensive list of products and processes that are derived from four specific biotechnologies and are commercially significant in agriculture (Kaye-Blake, Saunders, Emanuelsson, Dalziel, & Wreford, 2005). This innovative research generated primary data on the actual impacts that biotechnology is currently having on agricultural production and produced a unique dataset of biotechnology products and processes and their value to New Zealand agriculture. Analysis found that these four biotechnologies are contributing approximately 206 million per year to agriculture. This analysis, however, assumed perfectly elastic international prices, and thus that New Zealand agricultural producers would capture the benefits of increased productivity. Literature on the impacts of productivity increases suggests that the distribution of benefits from increased productivity depends on how widely a technology is adopted. For example, genetic improvements in the crops of one country can allow domestic producers to increase producer surplus at the expense of producers in the rest of the world (Frisvold, Sullivan, & Raneses, 2003). By contrast, domestic farmers may be worse off if innovations are adopted in both the home country and the rest of the world (Moschini, Lapan, & Sobolevsky, 2000). The literature also suggests that specific impact of a novel technology is important to its impacts on agricultural producers. For example, technology that increases yields may be less beneficial for farmers than technology that reduces costs (Moschini et al., 2000). In addition, innovations that increase productivity of commodity products with low price elasticities of demand may not benefit farmers as much as innovations that increase consumer demand for agricultural products (Saunders & Cagatay, 2003). These findings are relevant because some features of New Zealand's primary sector suggest that international price impacts may be important. New Zealand is an open economy (Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry (MAF), 2004) and a significant exporter on world markets, particularly in pastoral products (Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry (MAF), 2004; Saunders & Cagatay, 2003). Modelling the movement of international prices may be done in several ways. The general equilibrium GTAP model (Hertel, 1997), for example, has been used to examine the potential impacts of biotechnology on producer and consumer welfare assuming different levels of adoption and consumer acceptance (e.g., Anderson & Jackson, 2005; Stone, Matysek, & Dolling, 2002). These impacts have also been analysed with partial equilibrium models, in particular models derived originally from the Uruguay Round of trade negotiations (Roningen, 1997), such as SWOPSIM (Frisvold et al., 2003; Roningen, Dixit, Sullivan, & Hart, 1991) and LTEM (Saunders & Cagatay, 2003). Partial equilibrium models are particularly appropriate for analysing impacts on a single sector of the economy: they allow substantial disaggregation by commodity and examination of the linkages that lead to model results (Gaisford & Kerr, 2001). In order to investigate the possible impact of biotechnological innovations on commodity prices and agricultural producers, the results of the original findings based on elastic prices were incorporated into a partial equilibrium model of world agricultural commodity trade (Cagatay & Saunders, 2003; Saunders & Cagatay, 2003). The model contained 19 commodities, including the major trade commodities for New Zealand (dairy products and meat). World trade was divided into 17 countries and the rest of the world, including New Zealand as a separate entity as well as the US, EU, Australia, Japan and others. As a partial equilibrium model, it examined the agricultural sector in isolation from other sectors of the economy. The base year was 2000, and impacts were modelled to 2005. The base solution modelled current production, which included biotechnological innovations. Alternative scenarios modelled the impact of the absence or loss of biotechnological innovations. The first scenario modelled the absence of innovations in all countries, while the second scenario examined the impact of innovations specific to New Zealand. The contribution of biotechnology to productivity was assessed separately for each commodity, using the original dataset (Kaye-Blake et al., 2005). For each commodity in the model, the analysis calculated the change in producer prices and total producer returns (price x quantity). The modelling results conformed to expectations. In the first scenario, a worldwide reduction in productivity in the primary sector led market prices to adjust upward in response to the lower production. For the second scenario, the price impacts were smaller for sectors with innovations specific to New Zealand. These changes were then combined with the original, constant-price estimate to calculate price-adjusted figures. The constant price analysis found that the contribution of the biotechnologies was 206 million. The first modelling scenario found that the economic benefit of the biotechnologies was only 19millionbecauseincreasedproductivityreducedcommodityprices.Thesecondscenarioyieldedaneconomicbenefitof19 million because increased productivity reduced commodity prices. The second scenario yielded an economic benefit of 191 million, suggesting that adopting New Zealandspecific innovations might not have a large impact on aggregate trade and might have allowed domestic producers to capture much of the increased welfare from innovations. Economic impacts, however, were spread unevenly across the commodities. In both trade scenarios, dairy producers increased producer returns through biotechnology, regardless of how widely the innovations were adopted. Meat producers, on the other hand, improved their returns when the innovations were specific to New Zealand, but were somewhat worse off when the innovations were available worldwide. This research contributes to understanding of the impacts of biotechnology in several ways. First, the productivity impacts were based on empirical findings regarding estimated impacts of actual commercially released biotechnologies; these were estimates of impacts that have actually occurred. Secondly, the productivity effects varied by commodity in the model, so that the impacts on different commodities could be estimated. Finally, by using a disaggregated, multi-commodity model, the cross-effects from resources shifting into other agricultural uses could be captured.Research and Development/Tech Change/Emerging Technologies,

    Modelling Climate Change Impacts on Agriculture and Forestry with the Extended LTEM (Lincoln Trade and Environment Model)

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    In the land-based sectors, agricultural production generally is a source of carbon, while forestry may be thought to act as a sink. This paper focuses on new research examining the interaction of the two. The core of the research is the Lincoln Trade and Environment model (LTEM), a partial equilibrium model which links trade in NZ with the main trading countries overseas, through to production and associated environmental consequences . This paper reports on research expanding the model to include forestry from incorporating the capabilities of the Global Forest Products Model (GFPM) into the LTEM and hence producing an integrated model of agricultural and forestry land-uses for NZ and overseas. The paper extends the environmental modelling capabilities of the LTEM to include the impacts of climate change. The paper thereby reports on the development of a model of international trade that encompasses major agricultural commodities and forestry, complete with linkages and feedback with the environment and differentiated international markets. The paper then presents results of scenarios around changes in consumer behaviour and production using the new model.Environmental Economics and Policy,

    Uses of routine data sets in the evaluation of health promotion interventions: opportunities and limitations

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    Practitioners are under constant pressure to evaluate their work. In the current environment, health professionals frequently have limited time and financial resources, and opportunities for using existing data sets must be exploited. Routinely collected data provide a potentially useful resource for use in this context. The aim of this paper is to discuss the potential uses of routinely collected data in the evaluation of health promotion interventions. Opportunities for and limitations of routine data are discussed, drawing on examples primarily from the field of sexual health, to demonstrate principles which are also relevant in other areas of health care

    The Troubadours and the Song of the Crusades

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    Senior Project submitted to The Division of Arts of Bard College

    Capital Based Sustainability Indicators as a Possible Way for Measuring Agricultural Sustainability

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    This paper takes the capital based approach to sustainability and applies this to examine the sustainability of different farming methods. The capital based approach argues that for future generations to be as well off as the present than the capital base should at least be maintained. The paper explores some of the issues around this approach such as the definition of capitals, their measurement and weakness in the approach which do not account for the resilience of system and/ or the substitutability of capitals. The paper outlines how this could be applied to agriculture and show sustainability across different farming methods. The data used is from the ARGOS (Agricultural Research Group on Sustainability) project which has collected data on social, economic and environmental factors from kiwifruit orchards green, green organic and gold, for five years. The results show little significant differences across orchard types. This may be due to the homogeneity of kiwifruit orchards and it is intended to expand this to the sheep sector to examine this further.Agricultural and Food Policy,

    Process versus product: which determines consumer demand for genetically modified apples?

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    One debate in the literature regarding consumersā€™ reactions to genetically modified food (GMF) centres on whether consumers react to the process of gene technology or to the specific GMF products. Results from a choice experiment survey in New Zealand indicate that consumers are heterogeneous with regard to GMF and that some modifications are viewed more positively than others. These findings suggest that for some consumers the process of gene technology is the decisive factor in evaluatingGMF, while for others the different potential GMF products are valued according to their enhanced attributes.choice modelling, consumer surveys, food, genetic modification, preferences, Consumer/Household Economics, Demand and Price Analysis,

    Economic impacts on New Zealand of GM crops : result from partial equilibrium modelling

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    This paper reports findings from economic modelling of the impacts on New Zealand agricultural producer returns from the commercial use of genetically modified (GM) food crops. Several possibilities are considered in the modelling, including different rates of GM crop adoption, positive and negative consumer responses, increases in productivity, first- and second-generation GM crops, and control of the intellectual property. The results are consistent with theory, other studies and expectations. Thus, it is not surprising that New Zealand producers increase their revenue the most when they concentrate on products that have a premium in the market because consumers prefer them. If consumers prefer non-GM products, New Zealand producers gain by focusing on those crops. If consumers prefer second-generation GM products, producers increase their returns by growing those crops. Secondly, it is also consistent with theory, experience and expectations that an increase in productivity does not necessarily lead to increased returns. This is dependent upon whether NZ has sole access to the technology or whether it is or becomes available overseas. Thus, even where a product has a consumer preference, producer returns can fall when productivity increases. Thirdly, controlling access to preferred products or to productive technology has beneficial effects for New Zealand commodity producers

    Sexuality and obesity, a gender perspective: results from French national random probability survey of sexual behaviours

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    Objectives To analyse the association between body mass index (BMI) and sexual activity, sexual satisfaction, unintended pregnancies, and abortions in obese people and to discuss the implications for public health practices, taking into account the respondentsā€™ and their partnersā€™ BMI

    The Disputation: The Enduring Representations in William Holman Hunt's ā€œThe Finding of the Saviour in the Temple,ā€ 1860

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    This interdisciplinary thesis problematizes the Jewish presence in the painting The Finding of the Saviour in the Temple (1860) by William Holman Hunt. This ā€œJewish presenceā€ refers to characters within the painting, Jews who posed for the picture and the paintingā€™s portrayal of Judaism. The thesis takes a phenomenological and hermeneutical approach to The Finding providing careful description and interpretation of what appears in the painting. It situates the painting within a newly configured genre of disputation paintings depicting the Temple scene from the Gospel of Luke (2:47 ā€“ 52). It asks two questions. Why does The Finding look the way it does? And how did Holman Hunt know how to create the picture? Under the rubric of the first question, it explores and challenges customary accounts of the painting, explicitly challenging the over reliance upon F.G. Stephensā€™s pamphlet. Additionally, it examines Pre-Raphaelite and Victorian religious contexts and bringing hitherto unacknowledged artistic contexts to the fore. The second question examines less apparent influences through an analysis of the originary Lukan narrative in conjunction with the under-examined genre of Temple ā€œdisputationā€ paintings, and a legacy of scholarly and religious disputation. This demonstrates a discourse of disputation informing The Finding over and above the biblical narrative. In showing that this discourse strongly correlates with the paintingā€™s objectifying and spectacular properties, this thesis provides a new way to understand The Findingā€™s orientalism which is further revealed in its typological critical reworking of two Christian medieval and renaissance paintings. As a demonstration of the discourse, the thesis includes an examination of Jewish artists who addressed the theme of disputation overtly or obliquely thereby engaging with and challenging the assumptions upon which the disputation rests

    Consumer attitudes towards sustainability attributes on food labels

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    With current concerns about climate change and the general status of the environment, there is an increasing expectation that products have sustainability credentials, and that these can be verified. Labelling is a common method of communicating certain product attributes to consumers that may influence their choices. There are different types of labels with several functions. The aim of this study is to investigate consumersā€Ÿ purchase decisions towards certain sustainability claims on food products, particularly by displaying the reduction of carbon emissions. Choice outcomes will be evaluated using Discrete Choice Modelling (DCM). Data for the study is obtained by a web-based consumer survey undertaken in the United Kingdom (UK). Results provide information on different attributes effects on consumersā€Ÿ purchase decisions, particularly their willingness to pay. This study provides information on consumersā€Ÿ attitudes that will assist industries and firms to benefit from market opportunities, in particular assessing the methods by which carbon footprinting measures can be incorporated alongside information on other sustainability criteria in product marketing.food labeling, carbon footprint, discrete choice modeling, Agribusiness, Agricultural and Food Policy, Consumer/Household Economics, Environmental Economics and Policy, Food Security and Poverty, Health Economics and Policy,
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