Document Type : Original Article


1 Assistant Professor of Agricultural Economics, Faculty of Agricultural Sciences, University of Guilan, Rasht, Iran

2 Assistant Professor of Agricultural Economics, Faculty of Agriculture, University of Zabol, Zabol, Iran

3 Associate Professor of Agricultural Economics, Faculty of Agriculture, University of Zabol, Zabol, Iran


A reason for the success of the agricultural sector in developed countries is the regulation of farm size as it allows for the scale economy of production. Considering that the size of agricultural production units should be specifically determined based on the crop and the area where it is produced, this study aims to determine the optimum size of rice farms in Fereydunkenar County, Mazandaran Province. So, 198 farmers were randomly interviewed in 2014. The results show that the optimal economic size of the farms in the study area is 1.949 ha, 43% larger than the average cultivation area in the region. The results of the technical efficiency using the Stochastic Nonparametric Envelopment of Data model (StoNED) also show that paddy size has a direct correlation with the efficiency of these units in the studied area and production in larger farms is more economical and efficient. Therefore, it is suggested to consider plans to encourage rice farmers to establish cooperatives and change their farm management style from small farm owning to integrated management.

Graphical Abstract

Determination of Technical Efficiency and Optimum Size of Rice Farms in Mazandaran Province (Case study: Fereydunkenar County)


  • Determining the optimal size of agricultural units is one of the most important agricultural issues in the developing countries
  • One of the effective factors on agricultural productivity is the size of the agricultural unit
  • The farm size and efficiency has an important role in economic researches


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