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Tosakana N.S.P.,Agricultural Economics and Rural Sociology | Van Tassell L.W.,University of Nebraska - Lincoln | Wulfhorst J.D.,Agricultural Economics and Rural Sociology | Boll J.,Biological and Agricultural Engineering | And 3 more authors.
Journal of Soil and Water Conservation | Year: 2010

A survey of over 1,500 farmers located in northern Idaho and eastern Washington was conducted to examine conservation practices, attitudes, and perceptions. As part of this survey, farmers were asked to identify their adoption of gully plugs and buffer strips. Buffer strips were used by just over half of the farmers. Between 39% and 28% of respondents, depending on land slope, used gully plugs. An ordered logit model was used to predict the probability of adoption of each conservation practice and to identify key variables affecting farmers' decisions to invest in-those practices. The perceived effectiveness of the conservation practice had the greatest impact on adoption, while levels of education, years managing farms, and whether or not the respondent was farming full-time had little impact on these conservation decisions. The larger the acreage being farmed, the more likely the respondent was to invest in gully plugs. Almost half of the farmland was leased, which proved more of a deterrent to the adoption of gully plugs than buffer strips. The financial stress of the respondent and the cost of structure implementation were less important factors in the implementation of gully plugs and buffer strips. Conversely, the maintenance of these conservation practices, particularly buffer strips, was an important consideration in their adoption. Results of this survey and comments made by respondents indicate a keen interest by farmers in conservation issues. The importance of changing farmer's perceptions of the effectiveness of conservation practices was clearly identified in this study. Maintaining observation sites for several years may be a valuable asset in changing perceptions as farmers are able to witness the dynamic impact of conservation practices. Educational programs and materials focusing on conservation should likewise target off-farm landowners given the large percentage of the farmland that is leased in this region. Source


Brooks E.S.,University of Idaho | Boll J.,University of Idaho | Snyder A.J.,University of Idaho | Wulfhorst J.D.,Agricultural Economics and Rural Sociology | And 2 more authors.
Journal of Soil and Water Conservation | Year: 2010

The Northwest Wheat and Range Region is historically known for high soil erosion rates. During the 1920s and 1930s, erosion rates of 200 to 450 t ha -1 (90 to 200 tn ac-1) in a single winter season were observed. Improved soil conservation practices over the last 80 years have significantly reduced soil erosion rates, yet there is scarce evidence of significant reductions in sediment loading delivered by streams in the region. In this paper, detailed monitoring data collected in the Paradise Creek watershed, located in the high precipitation zone of the Northwest Wheat and Range Region in north central Idaho, provided an opportunity to assess the impacts of management practices on sediment loading at the watershed outlet. Both detailed event-based sampling over the last eight years and three day per week grab samples collected over the last 28 years indicate a statistically significant decreasing trend in overall sediment load. This decreasing sediment load can be attributed primarily to conversion from conventional tillage systems to minimum tillage and perennial grasses through the Conservation Reserve Program, practices initiated in the late 1970s and early 1980s. Over the last 10 years (1999 to 2009), management practices have targeted gully erosion and stream bank failures. Upstream and downstream sampling shows a larger than expected increase in sediment load through the urban areas of the watershed. Preliminary modeling results and empirical evidence indicate that delayed reduction in sediment load at the watershed outlet and the increased sediment load through the lower urban portion of the watershed may be caused by sediment storage in the stream channel. Source


Johnson A.J.,University of Idaho | Johnson H.C.,1049 Libey Road | Devadoss S.,University of Idaho | Foltz J.,Agricultural Economics and Rural Sociology
International Food and Agribusiness Management Review | Year: 2011

Utilizing strategic group analysis, this study classifies food businesses based on their propensity toward the different generic strategies and planning intensity. Data from a national survey was analyzed using the two-step clustering method. The resultant three groups are profiled based on their generic strategies and planning efforts, as well as their planning flexibility, view of industry volatility (dynamism), strategic emphasis on innovation, innovation, size, experience and financial performance. Managerial implications are made for each of these groups based on the profiles. © 2011 International Food and Agribusiness Management Association (IFAMA). Source

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