Pesticides: What you don’t know can hurt you

Joseph Goeb, Andrew Dillon, Frank Lupi, David Tschirley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Agricultural intensification can negatively affect farmer and social welfare through health and environmental externalities if producers have imperfect knowledge of the risks posed by agricultural inputs. This paper explores the effects of health-risk information on the demand for substitutes in the pesticides market and farmer preferences for risk-mitigating technologies using a choice experiment integrated with a randomized controlled trial in Zambia. Environmental health-risk information provided through a farmer training program had an insignificant effect on demand for risk-mitigating personal protective equipment but a significant effect on demand for substitutes, lower toxicity pesticides. The treatment group was twice as likely to substitute a highly toxic pesticide with a low toxicity pesticide after receiving training. What farmers do not know can hurt them and the environment through lower demand for less risky and less damaging substitutes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)801-836
Number of pages36
JournalJournal of the Association of Environmental and Resource Economists
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 1 2020


  • Becker-DeGroot-Marschak
  • Choice experiment
  • Exposure
  • Information
  • RCT
  • Toxicity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Nature and Landscape Conservation
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


Dive into the research topics of 'Pesticides: What you don’t know can hurt you'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this