World Agricultural Development and the Future of U.S. Agriculture

World Agricultural Development and the Future of U.S. Agriculture

World Agricultural Development and the Future of U.S. Agriculture

World Agricultural Development and the Future of U.S. Agriculture

Excerpt

This study was initiated in the spring of 1985 when the 1985 farm bill was being hotly discussed in Washington, D.C. After the roller- coaster ride that U.S. agriculture had taken in the 1970s and 1980s, policy makers and economic prognosticators alike were wondering what the future of U.S. agriculture is likely to be in the context of the changes that have been taking place and are continuing to take place in agricultures around the world. Without this answer, it certainly becomes difficult to discuss policy reform for agriculture rationally, especially with a longer perspective in mind.

In this context I was asked to prepare a study examining the longer-run prospects for U.S. agriculture, with emphasis on the effects of changes in developing agricultures. I have to thank Tom Johnson and Bruce Gardner for having confidence in me to undertake this large question. I also have to thank them for their patience in waiting for a long overdue product from me.

During the researching and writing of this study, I was on leave from the University of California, Davis, during 1985 and the first half of 1986, at Resources for the Future and at the University of Maryland, and then back at Davis in 1986 and 1987 when it was completed. I wish to thank these organizations for their generous support, which contributed to the final product. At Davis I was lucky to have Ken Foster's research assistance. His tireless searching for and assembling of sources and data added much to the study.

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