Date of Award:

1992

Document Type:

Thesis

Degree Name:

Master of Science (MS)

Department:

Applied Economics

Advisor/Chair:

Jay C. Andersen

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to determine the economic viability of various dryland wheat tillage systems, many of which were developed from years of cooperative research efforts.

In the study three conventional tillage methods were analyzed along with ten conservation tillage practices. The study farm consisted of 2000 acres, of which 1000 acres are classified as land 1 and its wheat yield is assumed to be 35 bushels per acre for non-continuous tillage methods and 23 bushels per acre for continuous tillage methods. The remaining 1000 acres are classed as land 2 and its assumed wheat yield is 30 bushels per acre for non-continuous tillage methods and 20 bushels per acre for continuous tillage practices.

The farm operating conditions were changed to allow for an economic evaluation of questions that a dryland farmer would face. Questions such as: 1. do no-till chemical-fallow treatments have higher profits than do conventional tillage treatments; 2. will it pay for my farming enterprise to participate in the 1990 Farm Bills' Acreage Reduction Program (ARP); 3. what effect will be on returns to land, labor and management of a new 20-ft combine purchase, were analyzed using the Cost and Return Estimator (CARE) computer enterprise budgeting program developed for USDA-Soil Conservation Service (SCS) for each land class totaling 104 CARE budgets.

A computer linear programming optimization model was run using LINDO to examine the 104 CARE budgets for an optimal tillage practice. The results are as follows:

1. Under the study assumptions chemical-fallow (no-till) treatments have higher profits than do conventional tillage treatments, if conventional tillage equipment can be adapted to no-till tillage methods.

2. Participation in the government ARP set-aside will offset the higher machinery ownership costs and thus it would pay to participate.

3 . The purchase of a new 20-ft combine or no-till Yielder drill as well as other major purchases could bankrupt a farming enterprise. It should be handled with CARE.

Included in

Economics Commons

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