Farmers’ Goals and Efficiency in Small-Scale Maize Production: The Case of Eastern Cape Province of South Africa
Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries
Volume 5, Issue 5, October 2016, Pages: 191-201
Received: Aug. 11, 2016; Accepted: Aug. 22, 2016; Published: Sep. 10, 2016
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Douglas Kibirige, Department of Agricultural Economics and Management, Faculty of Agriculture, University of Swaziland, Luyengo, Swaziland
Ajuruchukwu Obi, Department of Agricultural Economics and Extension, University of Fort Hare, Alice-Eastern Cape, South Africa
Micah Bheki. Masuku, Department of Agricultural Economics and Management, Faculty of Agriculture, University of Swaziland, Luyengo, Swaziland
Ajay Shankar Singh, Department of Agricultural Economics and Management, Faculty of Agriculture, University of Swaziland, Luyengo, Swaziland
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Farmers’ goals in complementarity with natural, physical and financial assets are crucial for efficient production and productivity especially for rural development and economic growth. Goals can be defined as aspirations for which a person has decided to undertake for improved well-being. This article examined correlates of farmers’ production efficiency, and their goals and other farmer/farm characteristics. The study was carried out at Qamata and Tyefu irrigation scheme in the Eastern Cape Province of South Africa, respectively. The study involved about 108 of farmers who were interviewed as source of primary data. This article assumes that farmers’ goals have a greater impact on their production efficiency. The principal component analysis was employed to establish generalized perceived farmers’ goals. Established principal component coefficients were regressed with generated production efficiency scores. A stochastic production frontier analysis was employed to generate the efficiency scores. Generated perceived principal component of farmers’ goals included self-expression (Farm status), business (profit) related goals, social (internal and external network and rules) related goals and independence goals (self-reliance). On average, smallholder farmers were technically inefficient in maize production with a score of about 44%. Farm and farmers’ characteristics found to be significantly related to technical efficiency included household size (at 5% level of significance), years spent in school (at 5% level of significance), access to training on agronomy (at 5% level), crop incomes (at 5% level), and government social grants (at 1% level of significance). The perceived farmers’ goal found to have a positive and significant impact on technical efficiency was farm status at 10% level, while farmers’ goal related to business (profit maximization) had a negative relationship with technical efficiency at 5% level of significance. This study recommends that all stakeholders in smallholder agricultural sector should participate in planning and implementing policies that match farmers’ goals and aspiration, and farmers’ improved formal education and access to farm loans, without changing the existing technology.
Farmers’ Goals, farmers, Technical Efficiency, Factor Analysis, Maize Output
To cite this article
Douglas Kibirige, Ajuruchukwu Obi, Micah Bheki. Masuku, Ajay Shankar Singh, Farmers’ Goals and Efficiency in Small-Scale Maize Production: The Case of Eastern Cape Province of South Africa, Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries. Vol. 5, No. 5, 2016, pp. 191-201. doi: 10.11648/j.aff.20160505.18
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