Tactical planning of the production and distribution of fresh agricultural products under uncertainty

Omar Ahumada, Jesus Villalobos, A. Nicholas Mason

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

50 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We present a stochastic tactical planning model for the production and distribution of fresh agricultural products. The model incorporates the uncertainties encountered in the fresh produce industry when developing growing and distribution plans due to the variability of weather and demand. The main motivation for building this model is to make tools available for producers to develop robust growing plans, while allowing the flexibility to choose different levels of exposure to risk.The modeling approach selected is a two-stage stochastic program in which the decisions in a first stage are designed to meet the uncertain outcomes in a second stage. The model developed is applied to a case study of growers of fresh produce in Mexico and in a simulation of various scenarios to test the robustness of the planning decisions. The results show that significant improvements are obtained in the planning recommendations when using the proposed stochastic approach as compared to those rendered by deterministic models. For instance, for the same level of risk experimented by the producer, planning based on the proposed stochastic models rendered increases of expected profit of over 50%. At the same time when risk aversion policies were implemented, the expected losses decreased significantly over those recommended by deterministic planning models.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)17-26
Number of pages10
JournalAgricultural Systems
Volume112
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2012

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agricultural products
uncertainty
planning
fresh produce
model uncertainty
profits and margins
growers
weather
Mexico
case studies
industry
testing

Keywords

  • Agricultural logistics
  • Agricultural planning
  • Fresh produce
  • Perishable products
  • Stochastic programming
  • Tactical planning

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • Animal Science and Zoology

Cite this

Tactical planning of the production and distribution of fresh agricultural products under uncertainty. / Ahumada, Omar; Villalobos, Jesus; Nicholas Mason, A.

In: Agricultural Systems, Vol. 112, 10.2012, p. 17-26.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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