An Economic Analysis of Profitability, Income Variability and Competitiveness of Farms under Different Size Categories in Ontario

Aerial View of Farmland

Despite the recognition of growing heterogeneity among farms in recent years, little is known about the range of variations in farm income and farm profitability across farms of different sizes in Ontario. Are there economies of scale or size that are consistently more profitable than others? What impact does diversification really have on farm profitability and income variability in Ontario? Does it vary across commodities and between small and large sized farms?…

Innovations in Managing Risk and Stochastic Simulation Modeling for Ontario Farming Sector


The success of the agricultural sector relies in part on its ability to manage the risks that are inherent to the industry.  The complexities involved in managing the uncertainties surrounding yield, price, financial leverage, exchange rate, intensive international competition, and domestic and foreign government policy have increased.  Not surprisingly, if these uncertainities are not properly understood or effectively handled, farm income and overall well-being may decrease substantially. This increase in volatility coincides with governments assessing the effectiveness of their current safety net programs and whether and to what extent they should continue to be involved.…

The Agricultural and Rural Policy Implications of a Changing Agricultural Sector

The farm sector has evolved from a homogeneous group - with relatively few differences in size, management, and composition - to one with significant differences even within specific commodity sector.  There are now distinctions between farm, farmer, and farm family, historically assumed to be one-in-the-same, and this has implications for defining the targets of farm and rural policy. Because of this fragmentation in the sector, there is a push away from uniform, catch-all policies to ones targeted toward specific farms and their operators.…

Competitiveness and Profitability of Ontario Swine Farm

Ontario Hogs

The Ontario pig industry has changed dramatically in the last decade as the production base has moved from many small farms to fewer, but larger farms. Between 1996 and 2006, the number of farms reporting pigs decreased by 39.9% but farm numbers in the swine farm class of 4,685 animals and over increased by 245%. Ontario farms tend to be sophisticated by taking advantage of the latest trends in production technology, environmental management, feeding systems, genetics, etc.…

Economics of Farm Income and Farm Structure
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