Factors affecting adoption of CA in Malawi. James L Mlamba

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A presentation made at the WCCA 2011 event in Brisbane, Australia.

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  • There was strong correlation between CA adoption and farmer membership to a group. Farmers belonging to a Farmer Group were indeed seen to be more likely to be practicing CA than those not belonging to any group
  • Farmer training was found to influence adoption as farmers when farmers practicing CA were compared with those who had never practised.
  • Farmers who buy their own inputs when starting CA were found to likely to continue with CA than those who solely depended on grants
  • Factors affecting adoption of CA in Malawi. James L Mlamba

    1. 1. Factors Affecting Adoption ofConservation Agriculture in Malawi James L. Mlamba WCCA 27 September 2011 Brisbane, Australia
    2. 2. Outline Introduction Study area Data collection Sampling procedure Results Conclusion/Recommendations
    3. 3. Introduction Agriculture is the single most important sector of Malawi’s economy It employs about 80% of the workforce, It contributes over 80% of foreign exchange earnings It also contributes significantly to national and household food security
    4. 4. Introduction It is characterised by low and stagnant yields and production of crops relies heavily on rainfall Crop production is mainly dominated by maize and that is estimated to cover 70% of the arable land The sector is facing some environmental challenges, which include soil erosion, low soil organic matter, nutrient deficiency and water
    5. 5. Introduction To counteract these problems different technologies are being promoted among which is Conservation Agriculture (CA) CA is based on the three principles of minimum soil disturbance, continuous soil cover and crop rotation/associations Despite the efforts being employed and benefits that CA has over conventional land management
    6. 6. Introduction This study therefore was carried out to determine factors affecting/restricting adoption of conservation agriculture and draw recommendations that may help in the up-scaling of the technology
    7. 7. Study Area  The study was carried out in Salima District  It is Rift Valley Escarpment Physiographic region (600-1000 masl)Salima  Rainfall: 800-1200mm but most areas receive less than 1000 mm.  Rainy season lasts 3-4 months
    8. 8. Data Collection• Farmer interviews were used through administration of semi-structured questionnaire• Another questionnaire was also administered to field staff
    9. 9. Sampling Procedure The study involved 60 farmers They were divided into three sub groups -Farmers practicing CA for a minimum of three years, -farmers who once practiced the CA but were no longer doing it, -farmers who had never tried the CA The respondents were selected.
    10. 10. Results• The results support the idea that male- headed households were more likely to adopt CA than females headed ones• No relationship was found between age of the respondents and adoption of CA• No statistical correlation was found between household size and CA adoption
    11. 11. Results No overall correlation was found between the adoption of CA and the household heads level of education - probably because less than 20% of all respondents had actually attended school to secondary level The study found no statistical correlation between farm size and adoption of CA, but most who did not practice CA (60%) owned less than 2ha, while most who did practice it (65%) owned more than 2 ha
    12. 12. Results A significant difference in levels of income was observed between farmers practicing the CA and those who had stopped There was a positive correlation between maintaining CA and having made a personal financial outlay to acquire the initial inputs
    13. 13. Farmer Group Membership among RespondentsResponse Practicing No longer Never CA Practicing Practiced CA CAYes 85% 30% 30%No 15% 70% 70%
    14. 14. ResultsResponse Practicing No longer Never CA Practicing Practiced CA CAAttended CA 100% 85% 40%TrainingNever 0% 15% 60%attended CATraining
    15. 15. ResultsFirst input acquisition methodResponse Practicing No longer CA Practicing CABought with own 75% 40%cashLoan 5% 0%Grant 50% 60%
    16. 16. ResultsReasons for Participating in CAReason %Soil and water conservation 45Soil fertility improvement 60%More yielding 40%Low labour demanding 70%
    17. 17. ResultsReasons for stopping Practicing CAReason %Expensive 60Grants stopped 35High labour demanding 10Input scarcity 5
    18. 18. ResultsReasons for never participating in CAReason %Not selected by the extension 30workerExpensive 30Not Interested 15Never been trained 20Never heard of it 5
    19. 19. Conclusion/Recommendations• Mobilising farmers to find their own start-up inputs would enhance adoption• There is need to demonstrate that CA is not synonymous with herbicide application• Farmer trainings in CA and mobilizing famers into groups need to be given more emphasis
    20. 20. Mulching after harvest Soybean cropA legume after maize harvest A section of participants at a field day Thanks for the

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