Whole Farm Economic Analysis Of East Coast Fever Immunization Strategies In Kilifi District, Kenya
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A whole farm simulation model termed the Technology Impact Evaluation System (TIES) was applied for assessing ex-ante financial and economic impacts of immunization of diary cattle against East Coast fever (ECF) by the infection and treatment method (ITM). Data from two case study farms, one representing small farms (less than 8 ha) and the other relatively large farms (greater than 8 ha) in Kilifi District in the coastal region of Kenya, were used in the analysis. TIES accounted for the stochastic nature of crop and livestock enterprise yields and prices by estimating probability density distributions associated with these variables over a period of 10 years. Farmers' risk preference for alternative ECF control strategies was assessed through stochastic dominance analysis. Results showed that strategies for ECF control based on ITM were financially and economically more profitable than current acaricide-based control on both the small and the large farm. For instance, net farm income and benefit-cost ratio increased by a range of 32–37% and 46–62%, respectively, on the small farm and a range of 52–58% and 65–78%, respectively, on the large farm. The greater the reduction in the use of acaricides permitted by immunization the higher the level of profitability achieved, with other model parameters held constant. The net benefits from immunization appeared to be relatively greater on the large than on the small farm. The most economically preferred ECF control strategy on both farms (taking into account farmers' risk preference) was immunization with 75% reduction in the cost of acaricide use. The confidence premium (an estimation of the marginal value to the farmer of an additional immunized animal) was Kenya shillings (Kshs) 1771 (US$51.00, 1992) and Kshs 1750 (US$50.00) on the small and large farm, respectively.