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Factors Hindering the Adoption of Value-added Management and Marketing Practices and Determining Value Differences for Steers and Heifers

Schumacher, Stephanie Dawn
This two-essay thesis aims to better identify non-adopting cow-calf producers in Oklahoma and to find the value of steer and heifer characteristics sold in an auction barn. Using the 2009 Beef Management and Marketing Survey, the first piece determines the least adopted value-added management and marketing practices, determines the most frequent reason categories hindering adoption, identifies the probability of producers not adopting a practices based on their characteristics, and identifies the probability of non-adopting producers to state specific reason categories hindering adoption for each practice using frequency procedures and binary logit models in SAS. The second piece uses Oklahoma Quality Beef Network auction data to determine the value of feeder cattle traits explicitly for steers and heifers in order to make market prices more transparent for buyers and sellers. Furthermore, the second piece uses a hedonic pricing model in SAS to achieve the desired objective. In the first piece, results showed producers are most constrained to adopting value-added management and marketing practices because the doubt the financial return from adoption or they do not know how to properly implement a practice. Moreover, a majority of Oklahoma producers are either older with a lot of experience or are "hobby" producers who receive a majority of their income off of the farm. The results also showed herd size, region, the combination of age and experience, and percentage of farm income to influence non-adoption probabilities. In the second piece, the results revealed a much larger discount for steers than heifers on most characteristics. This is likely due to the heifers being desired for their maternal ability and for reproductive purposes.