Date of Award

12-2012

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Legacy Department

Applied Economics and Statistics

Advisor

Hughes, David W

Committee Member

Carpio , Carlos

Committee Member

Crissy , Harry

Abstract

ABSTRACT
This research looks at the topic of agriculture and agricultural processing as a means for rural economic development. The purpose of the study is to determine the feasibility and desirability of a fruit and vegetable processor in Saluda County, South Carolina. A fruit and vegetable co-packer was chosen because of positive community response to the idea, large and growing fruit and vegetable production in the county, lack of fruit and vegetable processing in the county and growing demand for fresh cut and frozen produce. The proposed processor would produce sliced, frozen, bagged peaches during peach season and cut, frozen, bagged vegetables when peaches are not in season. The costs versus the revenues of the proposed facility were estimated to determine its profitability and feasibility. The desirability of the proposed processor was analyzed by examining the potential economic impacts on Saluda County through an input-output model of the regional economy constructed with the software program IMPLAN. Results of the model provided estimates of the direct, indirect and induced effects of the processor.
It was concluded that the proposed facility would be both financially feasible and profitable. In addition, the processor was determined to have desirable economic impacts on Saluda County, providing jobs and an infusion of spending across several sectors in the local economy. This research exemplifies the potential for agriculture and agribusiness as a viable method for economic development.

Included in

Economics Commons

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