Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin - Quarterly Journal of International Agriculture

Quarterly Journal of International Agriculture No. 2/07

Study of total factor productivity of tef in Ethiopia: application of a growth decomposition approach

Beyene Tadesse Ferenji
Addis Ababa University, Ethiopia

Franz Heidhues
University of Hohenheim, Stuttgart, Germany


Production and consumption of tef as human food is peculiar to Ethiopia. It is the major source of food and receives the largest proportion of resources in agricultural production. A growth change in this food crop can greatly affect the food sector in the country. This paper attempts to demonstrate the trend of total factor productivity of the crop after economic reform. A stochastic frontier model was applied in the analysis.

The results show that the changes in policy and institutions significantly improved the production efficiency of the crop by about 20% in the study period, whereas technological progress was severely deteriorated (36%) in the same period. The decline in the technological progress surpassed the improvement in production efficiency and ultimately resulted in total factor productivity to fall by 25%. These findings have shown that economic reform alone is not a panacea for increasing food production in general. Technological advancement is the other important component missing in the production of tef in this country.

Keywords: efficiency change, food production, policy reform, technological deterioration, tef

JEL: Q 160

Vol. 46 (2007), No. 2: 119-144