Adoption and Abandonment of Organic Farming: An Empirical Investigation of the Irish Drystock Sector


  • Doris Läpple

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    • Doris Läpple is a PhD student at the Department of Economics, National University of Ireland, Galway and Rural Economy Research Centre, Teagasc, Galway, Ireland. E-mail: for correspondence. The author acknowledges Teagasc Walsh Fellowship Scheme funding for this research, helpful comments from Stephen Hynes, anonymous reviewers and the editor David Harvey, as well as the provision of GIS and time-series data from Stuart Green and Trevor Donnellan, respectively.


There is a considerable literature about the adoption of organic farming. However, possible abandonment of organic farming has received scant attention. Thus, relatively little is known about the exit decisions of farmers. In addition, most studies are based on a static framework where it is not possible to account for changes in farmer decisions over time. This article attempts to fill this gap in the literature by investigating the determinants that affect both adoption and abandonment of organic drystock farming over time. The use of duration analysis allows for the consideration of cross-sectional and time-varying factors over the study period from 1981 to 2008. Using this dynamic econometric framework revealed a significant time effect on entry and exit decisions. Overall, the results highlight that where no attempt is made to account for exit decisions and time effects, important information about sustainable farmer decisions may not be taken into consideration.