An econometric analysis of marketing challenges faced by horticultural farmers in Pakistan: case studies from Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa
Farm produce marketing related inefficiencies pose significant challenges to horticultural farmers in Pakistan. These inefficiencies arise when farmers are restricted to sell their produce to licensed traders in regulated markets, when they engage in credit-tied transactions or when they face credit and information barriers. When farmers face these constraints, they tend to rely heavily on middlemen for producing and marketing their crops. In this thesis, I explore the nature, extent and implications of such reliance through testing for correlations between farmers' marketing and production choices, and the impact of these choices on their output prices and net returns. In the first empirical chapter, I analyse whether tomato farmers' key production and marketing decisions are correlated. That is, I explore if farmers' decisions to market tomato produce in far and nearby markets are correlated with their other decisions, such as investing towards producing better quality tomatoes, and accessing credit and market information from the middlemen. In the second empirical chapter, I explore the impact of farmers' key production and marketing choices on their output prices and net crop returns. That is, I investigate whether farmers selling high-grade produce and travelling farther receive better prices from their traders than those who do not. Furthermore, I analyse how access to credit and market information impact farmers' market choices, and profits. In the third empirical chapter, I aim to address the following research questions such as, (a) do farmers who adopt innovative production technology (tunnel farming) also make better marketing choices? (b) what are the key determinants of tunnel technology adoption? ( c) what is the causal effect of tunnel technology adoption on price and yield when the choice of adopting tunnel technology is exogenously and endogenously determined?