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Impact of off-farm labor supply on food expenditures of the farm household

Hung-Hao Chang () and Ashok Mishra ()

Food Policy, 2008, vol. 33, issue 6, 657-664

Abstract: Farm households diversify their income sources by working off the farm. This is a risk management strategy that is used by farm households in both developed and developing countries. Income diversification via off-farm work is associated with higher incomes and food consumption. However, little is known about the association between off-farm work and farm household food expenditures. In an effort to bridge this gap, this study attempts to assess the impact of off-farm work decisions by the operator and/or the spouse on the food expenditures of the farm household. Using a nationwide farm household survey in the United States and new econometric method, we find that the decisions of the operator and/or the spouse to work off the farm are significantly interrelated (29%). However, these two decisions affect food expenditures in different ways. The operator's off-farm work decision is positively related to food expenditures, while the spouse's decision is negatively associated with expenditures on food by the farm household.

Keywords: Off-farm; work; Farm; household; Food; expenditures; Income; diversification; Off-farm; income; Tobit; Government; farm; policy (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2008
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