The main objective of this chapter was to explain differences in the technical efficiency of indirect energy use of Dutch arable farmers through differences in management in order to obtain keys for the reduction of indirect energy use. The results of the analysis of management aspects showed that: the farmers in the sample had a poor knowledge of relevant agri-environmental policy for crop farming and of their own farm data and that it was difficult to synthesise the relevant information into an optimal fertilisation strategy. The results of the DEA analysis showed that: there was a large variation in TE between farms and crops. The average scores varied between 33% and 61%, indicating that for some of the farms and/or crops there is scope for improving TE. Furthermore, a positive correlation was found between TE of the individual crops and the gross margins, indicating that a more technically efficient production practice coincides with a higher income. From the comparison of the various TE scores of the nine farmers in the workshop with their scores for internal/external analysis, synthesis and for the degree of their economic mission, the following main conclusions were drawn: the economic mission, the internal analysis and the economic mission were positively correlated with the efficiency of indirect energy use at farm level, while the external analysis was negatively correlated. Overall it can be concluded that there is scope for a considerable reduction of indirect energy use by giving farmers management support in analysing their own farm data and formulating an optimal fertilisation strategy.
|Title of host publication||Economics of sustainable energy in agriculture|
|Editors||E.C. van Ierland, A.G.J.M. Oude Lansink|
|Place of Publication||Dordrecht, The Netherlands|
|Publisher||Kluwer Academic Publishers|
|Publication status||Published - 2002|
|Name||Economy & environment|
- energy conservation