Factors Influencing Adoption of Recommended Cassava Production Practices by Farmers in Bwari and Kuje Area Councils, Abuja, Federal Capital Territory
Objectives of the study
The broad objective of this study was to determine the socio-economic, institutional and technological factors influencing the adoption of recommended cassava production practices by farmers in Bwari and Kuje Area Councils of Abuja. The specific objectives are to:
- describe the socio-economic characteristics of cassava farmers in the study area
- examine the different sources of information through which farmers learn about recommended cassava production practices;
- assess the level of adoption of the recommended cassava production practices by farmers in the study area;
- determine the effect of socio-economic, institutional and technological factors on the adoption of recommended cassava production practices by farmers;
- examine the effect of adoption of recommended cassava production practices on income and yield of farmers and;
- identify the constraints faced by farmers in the adoption of recommended cassava production.
Origin of Cassava and its Characteristics
Cassava (Monihot spp) is one of the most ancient root crops known by man. Its origin and subsequent domestication is associated with African bitter or cluster yam, Discorea dumentorum (Mabawoku, 1984). It was cultivated in the tropical America before being introduced to Africa by the Portuguese traders around the 16th century (Oni et al.,2004). In Nigeria, it was introduced into Warri, in the then Bendel State of Nigeria, by the Portuguese explorers in the 17th century (Lean, 1976, as cited in Yakassi, 2010). Cassava however, did not become an important crop in the Country until the end of the 19th century when processing techniques were introduced as many slaves returned home (Ogundari et al., 2010) Cassava is a woody shrub of the family Euphorbiacea possessing tall, thin straight stems and when fully grown, attains an average height of 1
– 2 metres although some cultivars may reach a height of 4 metres. There are many cultivars under production in Nigeria. They can be distinguished by their morphological characteristics ranging from the leaf size, colour, shapes, time to maturity and yields. Traditionally, cassava tuberous roots are a major source of carbohydrates in human diets and are processed by various methods into products utilized in diverse ways according to local customs and preferences. The main industrial use of cassava is in the manufacture of starch and alcohol by textile and paper industries. The most popular dish made from cassava in Nigeria is gari and cassava flour (IITA, 1988).
Trend on cassava production in the world.
The world production of cassava root was estimated to be 184 millions tonnes in 2002 (FAO, 2004). The majority of production was in Africa where 99.1 million tonnes were grown. In Asia, 51.5 millions tonnes were grown and in Latin America and the Caribbean, 33.2 million tonnes were grown. Nigeria is the world’s largest producer of cassava, but based on the statistics from the FAO of the United Nation, Thailand was the largest exporting country of dried cassava with a total of 77% of world export in 2005 (FAO, 2007).
Cassava production in Nigeria and its prospect
Cassava production in Nigeria was approximated to be 34 millions tonnes in 2002 by the Food and Agriculture Organizations of the United Nations (FAO) in Rome (FAO, 2004). The production in Nigeria expanded steadily since 1980 to 1992 as a result of the adoption of the improved varieties. Presently, the future of cassava production in Nigeria is rosy (IITA, 2002). The institute advanced the following reasons; its ease of cultivation, high yield per hectares, little financial outlay requirement, fair yield on poor soil, tolerance for other crops grown with it and increasing industrial use. All these combined to make it a formidable potential crop.
The study was conducted in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory. Abuja was created and carved out in 1976 from the Kaduna, Niger, Kwara and Plateau States. The FCT is centrally located, lying within the latitude 8025 N and 9020 N. and longitude 6O 45’E and 7O 39’E. Abuja has a boundary with Kaduna State to north and Kogi State to the south. It is also bounded to the east and west by Nassarawa and Niger States respectively (Figure 2).
What is referred to as Local Government Area in states are “designated Area Councils in Abuja”. There are six Area Councils in Abuja namely: Abaji, Bwari, Gwagwalada, Kuje, Kwali and Abuja Municipal Area Councils. Abuja covers an area of 8,000 square kilometres with a total population of 1,899,622 in 2012. National Population Census Result (NPC, 201). The inhabitants of the area are the Gbagyi, Gwandara and Koro who are the indigenes and other ethnic groups that have moved into the capital city from all parts of the country for the administration of the federal ministries due to the relocation of Nigeria capital city from Lagos to Abuja, (AESD, 2004).
Farming is the major occupation of the majority of indigenes because the area is endowed with abundant fertile land suitable for farming activities. The crops cultivated are yam, cassava, maize, sorghum, rice, groundnut, beans and vegetables. Beside crop production, the rural communities also rear livestock such as sheep, goat, cattle and poultry birds at subsistence level.
The main vegetation of the study area is Guinea-savannah. It is a region of open natural grassland, sparse woodland and shrubs. The area is suitable for growing roots/tubers, cereals and establishment of pastures for livestock management. The soil combines both the good physical properties of sand with the good chemical properties of clay, as well as having adequate organic matter. It is easy to cultivate and sufficiently rich in plant nutrients for optimum plant growth, (AESD, 2004).
In Abuja, the durations of sunshine ranges from 6 – 8 hours per day in the southern parts and 8 – 10 hours in the northern parts from January to April/May. There is usually a steep drop to a mean of about 4 hours per day in the months of July/August due largely to increase in cloud-cover. It starts to rise again in September as a result of decrease in cloud-cover, (AESD, 2004).
RESULTS AND DISCUSSION
This chapter deals with the presentation and discussion of the result of the study. It focuses on the findings related to the objectives of the study. The first objective of the study was to describe the socio-economic characteristics of cassava farmers.
SUMMARY, CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATIONS
The broad objective of the study was to identify the factors influencing adoption of recommended cassava production practices by farmers in Bwari and Kuje Area Councils of Abuja. A multi-stage sampling procedure was used in the study. Random sampling method was used to select ten villages from the study area. These villages were Gutau, Kuduru, Igu, Panunike, Tokolo, Gwargwada, Gidan-Bawa, Rubochi, Kujekwa and Gudunkarya. A sample size was 120 respondents which were randomly selected and data were collected from the farmers in 2011 from 2010 cropping season. Descriptive statistics, multiple regression analysis and z-statistic were used to analyze the data.
The first objective of the study was to describe the socio-economic characteristics of cassava farmers in the study area. Result in Table 2 revealed that 86% of the respondents were in their active age of between (20-49 years).The respondents had large household size with a mean household size of 8 people. Majority of the respondents were small-scale farmers with fragmented farm holdings. About 81% of the respondents had formal education and 85% of the respondents were married. About 63% of the respondents had no access to credit whereas the average credit needs of the respondents was N88,750.00. About 87% of the respondents had no contact with the extension agents in 2010 cropping season and only 31% 0f the respondents were in different cooperative associations
The second objective of the study was to examine the different sources of information through which the farmers learn about the recommended cassava production practices.
Result in Figure 3 indicated that 58% of the farmers obtain information through radio which was followed by television with 25% of the respondents.
The third objective of the study was to access the levels of adoption of the recommended cassava production practices by farmers in the study area. Results as presented in Figure 5 indicated that recommended planting time had the highest adoption level with 78% of the respondents. This was followed by recommended planting method with 67% of the respondents. Adoption of recommended fertilizer application rates and herbicide application rates were relatively low with 25% and 17% of the respondents respectively. The recommended cassava harvester (lifter) recorded zero adoption level. This may be attributed to the high cost of the technology.
The forth objective was to determine the socio-economic, institutional and technological factors on adoption of recommended cassava production practices. The result of the multiple regression analysis was used to achieve this objective. Result in Table 5 revealed that the R value was 0.75 and the R² value was 0.60. Result further showed that seven out of the thirteen independent variables used in the model were significantly influential on adoption at 5% level of probability. These variables were; education, farm-size, credit need, extension contact, membership of cooperative association source of information and complexity. The result also indicated that the coefficients for age and marital status (-0.025 and -0.193) were all negative. This implies that adoption of recommended cassava production practices would decrease with and increase with age of respondent.
The fifth objective was to examine the effect of adoption of recommended production practices on yield and income of farmers. The z-statistic was used to achieved this objective. Result in Table 6 indicated that the minimum and maximum yields before and after adoption were 3832.4t/ha and 6387.3t/ha respectively. The differential percentage of yield was 67%. Similarly, the mean income of the farmers before and after adoption were N464,642.00 and N714,833.00 with a differential mean income of 54%. The table revealed that both the yield and income of farmers after adoption were higher than what was obtainable before the adoption of the recommended cassava production practices. This implies that a adoption of the recommended cassava production practices had influence on the yield and income of farmers.
The sixth of the objective was to indentify the constraints to adoption of the recommended cassava production practices. Table 7 showed the ranking of the constraints faced by farmers in adopting the recommended cassava production practices. The constraints were; Scarcity of farmland (1), Insufficient extension agents (2),Insufficient capital (3), High cost of farm inputs(4),Lack of access roads (5), Processing, storage and marketing problems (6), Problems of root/tuber pests and diseases(7), Poor information network(8).
The broad objective of this study was to identify the socio-economic, institutional and technological factors influencing the adoption of recommended cassava production practices by farmers in the study area. The results of the finding revealed that majority of the respondents were small skill farmers and most whom were not members of any cooperative associations. It also discovered in the study that there was poor extension contact and the inference for this was that, there was no proper awareness created for the potential benefits of recommended cassava production practices among the farmers in the area.
The result supported the other alternative hypothesis of the study that settle socio- economic characteristic, institutional factors and technological attributes significantly the adoption of recommended cassava production practices. This implies that education, farm-size, credit need, information source, membership of cooperative association, extension contact and complexity were important factors to consider in the adoption of recommended cassava production practices by farmers in the study area. This suggests that any extension strategy for cassava farmers, aimed at high level of innovation adoption should consider the roles of these factors. The result also reveal the contribution of each independent variable to adoption of recommended cassava production practices with an R² value of 0.60 which implied that all the variable together, explained about 60% of the variability in adoption of recommended cassava production practices in the study area.
Result indicated that used of recommended planting time, recommended planting method, recommended planting depth and recommended plant spacing had the highest adoption level. This implied that these four technologies had a relative advantage to the farmers than the other technologies adopted. The result revealed that adoption of recommended cassava production practices increased the yield and income of the farmers. This implied that if the farmers appropriately adopt the recommended cassava production practices, there is the tendency of earning more money which will assist in meeting up with the family needs and consequently, an improvement in their level of living, Cassava farmers in the study area encountered scarcity of farmland and this suggests their inability ton expand the current level of cassava production. Inadequate funds was also noted as a limiting factor on adoption of recommended cassava production practices among the farmers. It means that the farmer did not have enough money to buy the necessary farm input as revealed in the zero adoption of cassava lifter by the farmers.
Based on the results of the study, the following recommendations were proffered as means to encourage the adoption of the recommended cassava production practices in the study area.
- Radio was found as the main source of information therefore, ADPs should improve the adoption of recommended cassava practices through intensifying their promotional activities by allocating more air time to the radio farmer programme. Also, farmers should be encouraged to explore other available source of information such as television and active participation in the activities of co-operative associations for more awareness on the use of
- Findings revealed that extension services had a positive and significant influence on Adoption of Recommended Cassava Production Practices and majority of the farmers had no contact with extension agents in the 2010 cropping season. It was recommended that extension agents should be encouraged by way of providing better remunerations in order to improve on their work in terms of extension coverage and facilitation skills on the right usage of the RCPPs.
- Results also indicated that majority of the respondents were not members of co-operative associations and membership of co-operative associations was positive and significant at 5% level of probability on adoption of recommended cassava production practices. Therefore, it was recommended that farmers should be encouraged by ADPs and the NGOs to organize themselves into cooperative associations on various farm inputs. This would ensure maximum benefits of higher adoption of recommended cassava production practices in the study
- Findings showed that many cassava farmers had no access to credit and those that had access to it were faced with the challenges of collateral and high interest rates. Therefore, it was recommended that the Central Bank of Nigeria should review policies on agricultural loans with the aim of enabling farmers obtain loans from commercial and agricultural banks with ease and at minimal interest rates. In addition, farmers should be advised to organize themselves into credit relieving societies to take care of their financial needs to augment their personal savings.
- Findings revealed that the adoption of recommended fertilizer application rate, herbicide application rate and the use of cassava lifter were relatively low. This could be attributed to complex nature of the technologies to the farmers. Therefore, it was recommended that technology developers should develop technologies that are simple, cost effective and easily used by farmers. On the other hand, promoters of technology adoption should intensify efforts targeted at improving service delivery and promoting the adoption of RCPPs by the farmers especially the technologies that recorded low levels of adoption.
- Results showed that adoption of RCPPs had positive and significant effects on yield and income of farmers, but there was low level of adoption of the technologies. This could be attributed to the high cost of the technologies. Hence it was recommended that the technologies should be made available to the farmers at the right time and at affordable prices by the agencies
- Result also indicated that farmers’ major constraint on adoption of recommended cassava production practices was limited scale and uneven distribution of Hence, it was recommended that appropriate technologies that would suit the fragmented nature of farmland should be developed by research institutes.
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