Relative efficiency of record keepers in small farming in Barbados. (121)
Keywords:Relative economic efficiency, Farm record keeping, Barbados, Small farming
AbstractA survey of 160 small farmers was conducted in Barbados to determine the extent of record keeping among small farmers, as well as to determine whether farm record keepers have a higher level of technical and economic efficiency than non-record keepers. Two models were developed to measure relative technical efficiency and relative economic efficiency using estimations of production and profit functions. The results indicated that only 43 % of the small farmers kept records and these were mainly of sales and expenditure. Most of the farmers keeping records stated that the record keeping was used mainly to allow them to measure rather than to enhance the profitability of their operations. With respect to relative technical and economic efficiency, no differences in efficiencies were found between record keepers and non-record keepers. Thus, record keeping did not seem to improve the efficiency of farmers. A case can therefore be made for a cooperative system of record keeping for analysis of farm records and associated extension support, so that farmers in Barbados can use their records to improve their farm management and efficiency.