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Assessment of Mini-Livestock Farming in Peri-Urban Areas of Southwestern Nigeria: Implication for Policy Formulation, Food Security and Poverty Alleviation
This study investigated farmers’ involvement in mini-livestock farming such as grasscutter rearing, snailry, beekeeping and rabbit-keeping in the peri-urban areas of southwestern Nigeria. The study was conducted in Osun, Ondo and Ekiti States. Multistage sampling procedure was used to select 270 farmers from the three States using snowball sampling technique. Descriptive and inferential statistics were used to analyze the data collected. The results showed that mean age of mini-livestock farmers of Southwestern Nigeria was 52.0 years with high level of awareness but low level of involvement in all the selected mini-livestock rearing. Positive and significant correlation exist between level of involvement of farmers in mini-livestock farming and years of schooling (r = 0.285, p ≤ 0.01); participation in social organization (r = 0.158; p ≤ 0.01); number of information sources (r = 0.227; p ≤ 0.05) and extension contact (r = 0.225; p ≤ 0.05). Also, positive and significant correlation exists between level of involvement and institutional variables such as roles of agricultural research institutes (r = 0.188; p≤0.05), government policy (r = 0.177; p <0.01) and roles of Agricultural Development Programme (r = 0.120; p≤0.05). Community related variable such as infrastructural facilities (r = 0.117; p≤0.05) had positive and significant relationship with level of involvement. In conclusion, low level of involvement in mini-livestock farming was due to inadequate training of farmers in management practices. The future implication for food security and poverty alleviation is that if farmers are well trained by extension agents, there will be sustainable increase in production.