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Impact of Soil Fertility on Rice Productivity and Efficiency: A Case Study from Bangladesh pp.35-50 $100.00
Authors:  (Sanzidur Rahman, School of Geography, University of Plymouth, UK)
Soil fertility is an important factor in enhancing crop productivity but is not
commonly included in studies analyzing productivity and efficiency. In this study, we
examine the influence of selected soil fertility parameters on modern rice productivity
utilizing a stochastic production frontier approach on a survey data from 21 villages in
three agro-ecological regions of Bangladesh. Detailed crop input-output data were
collected from 380 paddy rice (Oryza sativa) farmers. The soil fertility status in each
region was determined by analysis of soil organic carbon, available nitrogen, phosphorus
and potassium concentration. Results reveal that in addition to key production inputs, soil
fertility also significantly affects the parameters of the production function. Available soil
potassium and soil nitrogen significantly increase rice productivity whereas available soil
phosphorus has an opposite effect. The soil organic carbon content also has a desirable
positive effect but the influence is not significant. The mean technical efficiency of these
modern rice farmers is estimated at 73%, implying that 37% [(100-73)/73] of the
production can be increased by eliminating technical inefficiency alone. Our results
indicate that in policy terms technological initiatives should be targeted at measures to
identify areas of lower soil fertility so that inherent soil-based productivity restrictions
can be minimized. In part this will be facilitated by the transfer of indigenous knowledge
from farmers in higher productivity areas, thus increasing rice production. Also,
investment in rural infrastructure is suggested to improve technical efficiency. 

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Impact of Soil Fertility on Rice Productivity and Efficiency: A Case Study from Bangladesh pp.35-50