Analysis of women farmers’ involvement in organic farming of maize in Ohaji-Egbema Local Government Area of Imo State
The study analysed women farmers’ involvement in organic farming of maize in Ohaji-egbema, local government area of Imo state, Nigeria. It specifically described the socio-economic characteristics of women organic maize farmers, identified the organic practices engaged by women maize farmers, ascertained women farmers’ level of involvement in organic farming of maize and identified the constraints militating against organic production of maize among farmers in the study area. Data for the study were collected from 80 women organic farmers through a multistage sampling procedure using structured questionnaire. Descriptive statistics and regression analysis were used for the analysis of the data generated. Results revealed that the majority (98.75%) had formal education with a mean age of 55 years. Investigation on the organic practices showed that women in organic maize farming practiced more of intercropping (98.8%), shifting cultivation (85%) as well as animal manure (54%). Result on the level of involvement showed that 52.5% of the farmers were moderately (6-10 organic practices) involved in organic farming. Lack of certification and distinction between organic and inorganic products in the market (82.5%) were the major constraints. farming experience, income, educational level and household size were significant and positively related to women involvement in organic farming at 5% level of significance. It was concluded that women are moderately involved in organic farming of maize in the study area. The study therefore recommends that there should be promotion for distinction of organic products in the market. Also the study recommends that the federal Government should enact a policy that will promote organic farming and their certification.
Key words: Organic farming, maize farmers, involvement.