Edward Karpoff, agricultural economist

April 25, 2012

Edward Karpoff, 94, a retired economist with the U.S. Department of Agriculture, died April 3 at the Hebrew Home of Greater Washington in Rockville.

He died of injuries from a fall, said his son Julian Karpoff.

Mr. Karpoff worked at the Agriculture Department from 1940 to 1979. He wrote the monthly “Poultry and Egg Situation” report in the 1950s and early 1960s and served in Geneva during the tariff reduction negotiations in 1967. He was agricultural attache in Tehran in 1977 and served the World Bank as a consultant on the Korean dairy industry, on loan from the Agriculture Department.

In retirement, he served for several years as a consultant to the University of Vermont on studies of the Vermont dairy industry.

Edward Karpoff was born in San Francisco to Jewish immigrants from Eastern Europe. He grew up on his family’s farm near Rosemont, N.J.

He was a 1938 poultry husbandry graduate of what is now Rutgers University in New Jersey, where he was elected to the Phi Beta Kappa honor society. He received a master’s degree in agricultural economics from the University of Connecticut in 1940.

During World War II, he was rejected for the draft because of poor eyesight, his family said. He worked at the Agriculture Department helping arranging shiploads of food for Britain during the war.

A former Kensington resident, he had lived since 2003 at the Ring House senior residence in Rockville. His memberships included the Gem, Lapidary and Mineral Society of D.C.

His wife, Bella Warhaft, whom he married in 1942, died in 2001. Survivors include two sons, Peter Karpoff of Silver Spring and Julian Karpoff of Lewes, Del.; four grandchildren; and five great-grandchildren.

— Adam Bernstein

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