Fodder for thought

Some years ago as were driving from Bhopal to Indore we saw an interesting phenomenon .A large number of heavily loaded trucks were seen on the road with loads of animal fodder and the trucks were apparently moving from the Madhya Pradesh State to the Punjab state .Animal fodder movement across thousands of kilometres does not seem to make much sense in view of the local availabilty of the stuff and what is available here should be available in plenty in Punjab too. What is the logic in transporting such large quantities of the stem and the leaves of the crops after the harvest merely for making it available to the animals in Punjab across several thousands of kilometres ?

On a closer thought we came to the conclusion that the theory of comparative advantage makes eminent sense in such situations.In Punjab the fodder is equally available but it does not make sense there to have it cut after the harvest incurring heavy agricultural labour costs which are higher there compared to the Madhya Pradesh .In Punjab the harvesting is done with machines and therefore it is easier there to remove the stubs of the cut plants by burning .In Madhya Pradesh the harvesting is done manually by cutting the plant at the bottom and after the threshing the remaining part of the plant is diverted for animal fodder.

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