IS VEGETABLE GRAFTING ECONOMICALLY VIABLE IN THE UNITED STATES: EVIDENCE FROM FOUR DIFFERENT TOMATO PRODUCTION SYSTEMS
Four case studies representing distinct tomato (Solanum lycopersicum) production systems were selected, including conventional and organic field production, conventional production in multi-bay tunnels and organic production in high tunnels. Relevant cost and revenue information was collected. On-farm economic impact of grafting technology adoption was evaluated for each system. The primary objective was to use these real-life examples to investigate the forces that should be driving grower adoption decisions. A combination and interaction of multiple factors such as grafting transplant prices, expected yield improvements and sale prices guide adoption decisions. The use of grafted transplants generally resulted in positive net returns; conventional field tomato production and high tunnel organic tomato production were shown to be more sensitive to grafting transplant prices as they generally have lower profit margins. At high selling prices, growers can afford to pay price premiums for grafted transplants because only very modest yield improvements are required to compensate for higher costs of grafted plants. Use of grafted plants has potential economic benefits in all systems but actual outcome is dependent on multiple factors.
Rysin, O., Rivard, C. and Louws, F.J. (2015). IS VEGETABLE GRAFTING ECONOMICALLY VIABLE IN THE UNITED STATES: EVIDENCE FROM FOUR DIFFERENT TOMATO PRODUCTION SYSTEMS. Acta Hortic. 1086, 79-86
farm enterprise, production budgets, Solanum lycopersicum, transplant prices