Socio-Economic Relevance of Cassava to Rural Peasant Farmers in the Awutu-Effutu-Senya and Atebubu-Amantin Districts of Ghana
This paper examines the socio-economic relevance of cassava to rural peasant farmers in two districts in Ghana, with the aim of highlighting its significance in ensuring improvement in rural socio-economic livelihoods. The study employed mainly the quantitative research technique in collecting data from 120 respondents from six farming communities in the Awutu-Effutu-Senya and Atebubu-Amantin districts of the Central and Brong Ahafo regions of Ghana respectfully. Data collected with structured questionnaire were analyzed in accordance with the study objective. The paper establishes that since its introduction to Ghana in the sixteenth century, cassava has contributed and continues to contribute significantly to the socio-economic livelihoods of peasant farm producers in the two districts. It is a major crop cultivated in combination with other crops and hence a major contributor to the income of peasant farmers. It also serves as a major source of occupation of rural dwellers and hence provides them with a sense of relevance and dignity in their communities. To this extent, the paper suggests among others that the state pays more attention to research and development with the view to introducing a higher yielding cassava variety that would be suitable for Ghanaian soil type, and to facilitate the development of an integrated cassava industry in Ghana to link peasant farm producers to the growing global market for cassava-starch and its derivatives.
KEY DESCRIPTORS: Rural Peasant Farmers, Socio-economic Livelihood, Peasant Economy, Depeasantization of Agriculture, Rural Transformation.
© 2018 The authors.
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