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Analysis of productivity and efficiency of food system firms

Subject content:

The course starts with a review of productivity and efficiency analysis and of how productivity and efficiency can be estimated using empirical methods. After this follows impact evaluation of production efficiency and a critical assessment of reasons for inefficiency. The course ends with a review on risk exposure and how it can affect productivity and efficiency and with a review of sustainability performance measurement and how it relates to production efficiency.

Course implementation:

The course uses different teaching methods to promote students' learning and discussions through:

Lectures, exercises, seminars, group work and individual studies.

The course focuses on the following general competences:

Critical thinking, scientific methods, independence.

The following components are compulsory:


Information from the course leader

A warm welcome to the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences and the course Analysis of productivity and efficiency of food system firms!

Below, you will find general information about the student account, registration for the course and other practical information.

The student account

You will need your student account to access e.g. your e-mail, Ladok and Canvas. For information regarding how to create your student account, follow this link:

Registration for the course

Self-registration for the course is done in Ladok between 2024-04-12–2024-04-26. Remember that you must be admitted and registered in Ladok to be able take the course. Having access to Canvas does not mean you are registered in the course and without registration, you are risking losing your place in the course. If you have been admitted to the course with conditions, you need to send your credit list to the course leader who will review it and decide if you can register. Do this as soon as possible as reviewing credits may take a few days due to the course start.

Educational support

If you are entitled extra educational support, please inform the course leader at the start of the course so that special arrangements can be made.

For educational support for an exam, see instructions in the exam registration in Ladok Student. You need to register for alternative exam arrangements no later than 10 workings days prior to the examination day. More information here:

Discontinuation of a course

If you want to discontinue the course, you should immediately notify the educational administrators at, who in turn will inform the course leader and register a non-completion of the course in Ladok after your approval. You are also able to register an early non-completion of the course (within three weeks after course start) in Ladok yourself.


You need to register for exams in Ladok. The registration closes 10 working days prior to the exam. You can find your anonymity code in Ladok Student. It's not possible to register for the exam after the deadline has passed.

On Wednesdays between 12:30-14:30 we have an exam hand out at the department (Ulls hus, 4th floor). Please remember to bring your ID-card.


Do not hesitate to contact us at if you have any questions!

Kind regards,
The educational administrators

Syllabus and other information

Litterature list


  • Coelli, T., Rao, D., O’Donnell, C., and Battese, G. (2005). An introduction to efficiency and productivity analysis. An Introduction To Efficiency and Producvitity Analysis.


  • Färe, R., Grosskopf, S., Lovell, C. A. K., and Yaisawarng, S. (1993). Derivation of Shadow Prices for Undesirable Outputs - a Distance Function-Approach. The Review of Economics and Statistics 75: 374–380.

  • Brümmer, B., Glauben, T., and Thijssen, G. (2002). Decomposition of Productivity Growth Using Distance Functions: The Case of Dairy Farms inThree European Countries. American Journal of Agricultural Economics 84: 628–644.

  • Färe, R., Grosskopf, S., Noh, D.-W. W., and Weber, W. (2005). Characteristics of a polluting technology: theory and practice. Journal of Econometrics 126: 469–492.

  • Cuesta, R. a., Lovell, C. A. K. A. K., Zofío, J. L., and Zofio, J. L. (2009). Environmental efficiency measurement with translog distance functions: A parametric approach. Ecological Economics 68: 2232–2242.

  • Latruffe, L., and Nauges, C. (2014). Technical efficiency and conversion to organic farming: The case of France. European Review of Agricultural Economics 41: 227–253.

  • Njuki, E., and Bravo-Ureta, B. E. (2015). The Economic Costs of Environmental Regulation in U.S. Dairy Farming: A Directional Distance Function Approach. American Journal of Agricultural Economics 97: 1087–1106.

  • Picazo-Tadeo, A. J., Beltrán-Esteve, M., and Gómez-Limón, J. A. (2012). Assessing eco-efficiency with directional distance functions. European Journal of Operational Research 220: 798–809.

  • Guesmi, B., and Serra, T. (2015). Can we improve farm performance? The determinants of farm technical and environmental efficiency. Applied Economic Perspectives and Policy 37: 692–717.

  • Pérez Urdiales, M., Lansink, A. O., and Wall, A. (2016). Eco-efficiency Among Dairy Farmers: The Importance of Socio-economic Characteristics and Farmer Attitudes. Environmental and Resource Economics 64: 559–574.

  • Huang, W., and Bruemmer, B. (2017). Balancing economic revenue and grazing pressure of livestock grazing on the Qinghai-Tibetan-Plateau. Australian Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics 61: 645–662.

  • Hansson, H. H., Manevska-Tasevska, G., and Asmild, M. (2018). Rationalising inefficiency in agricultural production - the case of Swedish dairy agriculture. European Review of Agricultural Economics 47: 1–24.

  • Martinez Cillero, M., Wallace, M., Thorne, F., and Breen, J. (2021). Analyzing the Impact of Subsidies on Beef Production Efficiency in Selected European Union Countries. A Stochastic Metafrontier Approach. American Journal of Agricultural Economics 103: 1903–1923.

  • Koiry, S., and Huang, W. (2023). Do Ecological Protection Approaches Affect Total Factor Productivity Growth of Cropland Production in Sweden? Ecological Economics 209: 107829.

Course facts

The course is offered as an independent course: Yes The course is offered as a programme course: Environmental Economics and Management - Master's Programme Agricultural, Food and Environmental Policy Analysis (AFEPA) - Master's Programme Agricultural Economics and Management - Master's Programme Agriculture Programme - Economics and Management Tuition fee: Tuition fee only for non-EU/EEA/Switzerland citizens: 13090 SEK Cycle: Master’s level (A1N)
Subject: Economics
Course code: NA0198 Application code: SLU-40174 Location: Uppsala Distance course: No Language: English Responsible department: Department of Economics Pace: 100%