Date of Award

Fall 2013

Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Agricultural Economics

First Advisor

Philip L. Paarlberg

Committee Chair

Philip L. Paarlberg

Committee Member 1

Benjamin M. Gramig

Committee Member 2

John G. Lee

Committee Member 3

Chong Xiang


Welfare impacts of alternative pest management strategies of False Codling Moth (FCM) threatening California's oranges are examined. Different economic agents along the supply chain of fresh oranges and orange products in the United States are considered, including consumers, retailers, wholesalers, and growers. A partial equilibrium dynamic framework that accounts for supply response from the other US orange producing states is developed. Data for supply shocks (orange yield losses and control costs) are obtained from the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service of the United States Department of Agriculture (APHIS).

FCM is not presently in the United States. If introduced to California and no action is taken for its control, FCM can spread in all of California's orange acreage within 10-12 years resulting in an annual crop loss of 11.25%. In addition to a No Mitigation Scenario, three pest management scenarios are considered for control/eradication of the pest where growers in infested areas are assumed to pay all the costs: The Pesticide Treatment and Area-Wide Pest Management scenarios slow down the pest spread to reach 9.3% and 1.89% of California's orange bearing acreage in 30 years respectively. The annual per acre cost is $380.9 for the former scenario and $2310.5 for the later scenario. The Eradication Scenario eradicates the pest in seven years (the pest almost disappears in the second year) at an annual cost of $3508.5 per acre besides stripping off the entire yield of the infested orchard.

The results show that California orange growers' ranking of the alternative scenarios in terms of their total welfare impacts in 30 years is opposite to that of consumers and retailers in all the US regions, California wholesalers and the US as a whole. The No Mitigation Scenario which leads to the highest welfare losses for the US as a whole (-$1240 million) is associated with the highest gains for California orange growers ($1063 million). The Eradication Scenario which results in the lowest welfare losses for the US as whole (-4 million) is associated with the lowest welfare gains for California orange growers in non-infested areas and the highest individual grower welfare losses for California orange growers in infested areas (a total loss of -$0.93 million for all California orange growers).