An Economic Comparison of High Tunnel and Open-Field Strawberry Production in Southeastern Virginia and A Joint Estimation of Acreage Planted to U.S. Major Crops
This thesis covers two separate studies. The first study, chapter 2, was conducted to evaluate whether there are additional economic returns from producing strawberries in the high tunnel compared to the open-field in Southeast Virginia. We develop and compare budgets for eight strawberry cultivars grown in the two environments and sold under three marketing strategies (pre-pick wholesale, pre-pick retail, and U-pick). Almost all cultivars in the high tunnel generated negative net revenues regardless of the marketing strategy. In contrast, net revenues from open-field cultivars were always positive.
In the second study, chapter 3, we used a fractional multinomial logit model to estimate the effect of crop revenues, input costs, and fuel ethanol production on the joint acreages planted to eight U.S major crops (barley, corn, cotton, peanuts, rice, sorghum, soybeans, and wheat). We found a positive and statistically significant marginal effect of the expected peanuts' revenue on its acreage share. The expected corn revenue had a negative average marginal effect on soybean acreage share, and the effect of expected wheat revenue was positive on cotton acreage share and negative on rice acreage share.