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A study of the economic performance and potentials of the ranchers in the Waimea Project of the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands

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Title: A study of the economic performance and potentials of the ranchers in the Waimea Project of the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands
Ranchers in the Waimea Project of the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands
Waimea Project of the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands
Authors: Abarientos, Ernesto P.
Keywords: Hawaii -- Dept. of Hawaiian Home Lands
Cattle trade -- Hawaii
Issue Date: 1969
Publisher: [Honolulu]
Abstract: This study attempts to evaluate the economic performance of the ranchers in the Waimea project of the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands and to offer some suggestions on the potential means of increasing the monetary returns from ranching. More specifically, the objectives of the study are: (1) to determine the present level of achievement of the ranching project; (2) to determine the physical, economic, and other restrictions under which the ranchers operate; (3) to determine the impact of existing sets of restriction on ranch resource organization and achievement; (4) to show some potentials for increasing returns from ranching; and (5) to provide recommendations and suggestions on how the economic goals or objectives of the ranchers can be achieved. Results indicated that the economic performances of the ranchers on the average were below optimum. On the average, the ranches appeared to be understocked with cattle. This, coupled with recent low prices for beef has resulted in low net returns from ranching. If the project is to approach its economic potential for ranching, the ranchers need to stock at a level approaching long run potential capacity. Some of the ranches have inherently good grazing lands. Of the 52 ranches, 21 can be stocked to a maximum of 1.50 acres per animal unit or better according to the inherent productivity of the pasture ranges. Assuming average conditions and present prices prevail, this would mean a potential net ranch income (return to land and management) of approximately $4,000 per ranch for a cow-calf operation or not less than $6,000 per ranch for a cow-yearling operation for the ranchers. However, the ranching decisions regarding stocking rates have to be made in face of uncertainty in range conditions. This study has used statistical decision theory (Bayesian statistics) to determine long range potential stocking rate under uncertainty. Under this approach, it would appear that the long run returns from ranching would be considerably lower. This analysis indicates that a typical rancher could expect to achieve a net income in the long run of $1,442 for a cow-calf operation and $2,347 for a cow-yearling operation. Many of the ranches can be made to carry livestock in excess of the computed potential capacity by adopting good pasture improvement practices and other methods of intensifying use of resources. Changes in the institutional restriction hold considerable promise for improving ranch returns. A change in the policy of the use of the community pasture could produce additional benefits to the ranchers. The limit of 300 acres per ranch could be relaxed in the case of the few ranchers who would be able to fully utilize present resources. Some effect might be achieved by adopting policies encouraging ranchers unable to make full use of grazing potential to sublease their lands to the ranchers who need and could use additional acres. In some cases the ranchers appear to lack interest in intensifying ranch operations; in others, they do not appear to have access to capital as needed to accomplish this. A major obstacle to increasing the present levels of individual ranch and project incomes appears to be financing. The Department of Hawaiian Home Lands have not had a loan fund adequate to meet the needs of these ranchers. The ranchers tend to have only very limited access to other sources of financing because of lack of collateral inherent in the land lease arrangements unless the ranchers have off-the-ranch income. Although working off the ranch is one way to accumulate ranch resources, it is necessarily a slow process and diverts interest and energy away from the ranching operation. In spite of the low economic returns of the project as a whole, it is possible that the objective of rehabilitating the ranchers in terms of their social well-being may have been realized. The ranchers and their families live in well-built comfortable homes in an attractive community. Some have achieved a modest degree of success as ranchers. Others work off the ranch and supplement their incomes with ranch operations. These in turn may use their off-ranch income to finance ranch improvement. These factors should be considered in development of policy to enhance project return.
Description: Typescript.
Thesis (Ph. D.)--University of Hawaii, 1969.
Bibliography: leaves [158]-160.
xiii, 160 l maps, tables
Rights: All UHM dissertations and theses are protected by copyright. They may be viewed from this source for any purpose, but reproduction or distribution in any format is prohibited without written permission from the copyright owner.
Appears in Collections:Ph.D. - Agricultural Economics

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