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Research article2024Peer reviewedOpen access

Evaluating environmental effects of adopting automatic milking systems on Norwegian dairy farms

Martinsson, Elin; Hansson, Helena; Mittenzwei, Klaus; Storm, Hugo


We present a novel procedure based on eco-efficiency for assessing farm-level effects of technology adoption while considering secondary effects. Secondary effects are defined as structural and behavioural adaptations to technology that may impact environmental, social or economic outcomes. We apply the procedure to automatic milking systems (AMS) in Norway and find that AMS induces secondary effects, most strongly by decreasing labour per cow and increasing herd sizes. For estimating effects of AMS we employ a novel causal machine learning approach. AMS induce heterogenous effects on eco-efficiency, negatively associated with herd expansion and labour per cow.


eco-efficiency; automatic milking robots; Norway; agricultural innovations

Published in

European Review of Agricultural Economics
2024, Volume: 51, number: 1, pages: 128-156

      UKÄ Subject classification

      Business Administration
      Agricultural Science

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