International Journal of Agriculture and Rural Development

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Intra-Household Impacts of Small Farm Commercialization of Maize Enterprise in Abia State, Nigeria

SN Odurukwe, CC Asiabaka, NE Ejiogu-Okereke


This study was designed to analyze the impacts of small farm commercialization of maize enterprise on farming households in Abia State, Nigeria. Data were collected from 150 farming households through interview schedule and analysed using tables, percentages, a 4-scale Likert-type ranking method and ordinary least square regression technique. Findings reveal that males, females and children are actively involved in small farm maize production and commercialization, with women playing more active roles than the others. The impact of maize commercialization on the household members was found to be ambivalent. It led to a gain of financial capital (such as income, purchasing power, improved household food and nutrition security etc), and a loss of human capital (such as less time available for social activities, child care, education, leisure, etc.), with the effects being greatest on women than the men and children. The major determinants were found to include farm size, farming experience, volume of credit available and accessible, household size, expected profits and primary education. It is recommended among others that policy measures geared towards land tenure reforms, market development and micro credit provision by the State and other change agents should be vigorously pursued. Farmers are encouraged to form and maintain functional groups or cooperatives for easier access to credit and group marketing of produce.

Int. J. Agric. Rural Dev., 2003, 4: 59-67
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