A SOCIOECONOMIC ASSESSMENT AND RISK PERCEPTION OF STAKEHOLDERS ON THE IMPACT OF THE CITRUS GREENING DISEASE / HUANGLONGBING (HLB) IN BELIZE

Citrus Greening Disease is a deadly bacterial disease that affects all citrus varieties. It is rated by most national and international research institutions as the most destructive disease in citrus and to date has led to drastic reductions in production in Asia and Africa and now threatens citrus industries in the western hemisphere. Citrus Greening has been known internationally from its first description in China, as Huanglongbing (HLB), translated as "yellow shoot disease". The disease was confirmed in the Americas in Brazil in 2004. Since then, its presence has been verified in several other major citrus producing countries including: Florida / United States (2005), Cuba (2007), Mexico, Jamaica and Belize (2009). The economic cost implications of HLB have been estimated to far exceed other citrus diseases that have affected the industry in previous years. This study focused on two aspects of the Belize citrus industry: (i) the socioeconomic impact of the disease and (ii) the producers' response to the disease. The convenient sampling technique was used to enumerate stakeholders across the value chain to ascertain their experiences with the impact of the disease on the industry up to December 2011. The risk attitude and risk perception of primary (fruit) producers in the industry was evaluated by using a psychometric test. The results of the study found that the demise of the citrus industry would have negative socioeconomic impact on Belize specifically, citrus producers, agriculture workers, rural citrus producing communities and stakeholders within the citrus industry value chain. Analysis of the logistic regression focused on the significance of three variables: risk attitude (ra), risk perception (rp), and a combination of the two (risk attitude and risk perception) (rarp) on the behavioural outcome of farmers (whether to remain or exit the citrus industry). The results indicated that the variable (φ) (farmers risk perception) has a p-value of 0.030. Farmers risk perception was the only variable with a p-value below the chosen level of significance (0.05). Hence, only risk perception influenced the behavioural outcome. Despite this threat, an estimated 76% of the farmers were willing to remain in the citrus industry and deal with the challenges presented by HLB. The results also show that 49% of the farmers enumerated were risk-seeking and 66% had employed some form of management for the disease. Overall, HLB was perceived by primary stakeholders as the disease which poses the greatest risk to the citrus industry of Belize.


Issue Date:
2012
Publication Type:
Conference Paper/ Presentation
PURL Identifier:
http://purl.umn.edu/253724
Total Pages:
12




 Record created 2017-04-01, last modified 2017-04-26

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