Does Eco-Certification have Environmental Benefits? Organic Coffee in Costa Rica

Resources for the Future Discussion Paper No. 10-58

27 Pages Posted: 23 Nov 2010

See all articles by Allen Blackman

Allen Blackman

Inter-American Development Bank (IDB)

Maria Naranjo

Tropical Agricultural and Higher Education Center

Date Written: November 22, 2010

Abstract

Eco-certification of coffee, timber, and other high-value agricultural commodities is increasingly widespread. In principle, it can improve commodity producers’ environmental performance, even in countries where state regulation is weak. However, evidence needed to evaluate this hypothesis is virtually nonexistent. To help fill this gap, we use detailed farm-level data to analyze the environmental impacts of organic coffee certification in central Costa Rica. We use propensity score matching to control for self-selection bias. We find that organic certification improves coffee growers’ environmental performance. It significantly reduces chemical input use and increases adoption of some environmentally friendly management practices.

Keywords: Certification, Coffee, Costa Rica, Propensity Score Matching

JEL Classification: Q13, Q20, 013, Q56

Suggested Citation

Blackman, Allen and Naranjo, Maria, Does Eco-Certification have Environmental Benefits? Organic Coffee in Costa Rica (November 22, 2010). Resources for the Future Discussion Paper No. 10-58. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1713888 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1713888

Allen Blackman (Contact Author)

Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) ( email )

1300 New York Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20577
United States

Maria Naranjo

Tropical Agricultural and Higher Education Center ( email )

Turrialba
Costa Rica

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