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The potential cost to New Zealand dairy farmers from the introduction of nitrate-based stocking rate restrictions

Mark Neal ()

No WP8M05, Murray-Darling Program Working Papers from Risk and Sustainable Management Group, University of Queensland

Abstract: Introducing a stocking rate restriction is one possible course of action for regulators to improve water quality where it is affected by nitrate pollution. To determine the impact of a stocking rate restriction on a range of New Zealand dairy farms, a whole-farm model was optimised with and without a maximum stocking rate of 2.5 cows per hectare. Three farm systems, which differ by their level of feed-related capital, were examined for the changes to the optimal stocking rate and optimal level of animal milk production genetics when utility was maximised. The whole-farm model was optimised through the use of an evolutionary algorithm called differential evolution. The introduction of a stocking rate restriction would have a very large impact on the optimally organised high feed-related capital farm systems, reducing their certainty equivalent by almost half. However, there was no impact on the certainty equivalent of low feed-related capital systems.

Keywords: environmental regulation; dairy farms; whole-farm model; evolutionary algorithm (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: C61 Q12 Q52 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2005-12
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-agr, nep-cmp and nep-env
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http://www.uq.edu.au/rsmg/WP/WPM05_8.pdf (application/pdf)

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Working Paper: The Potential Cost to New Zealand Dairy Farmers from the Introduction of Nitrate-Based Stocking Rate Restrictions (2006) Downloads
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