Yam Production and its Determinants in Nigeria
There is global food insecurity which could be attributed to poor performance of farmers in the developing countries. Ironically, Nigerian farmers are poor and the most food insecure. Yam contributes to wealth and food security of Nigeria. Notwithstanding, yam farmers in Nigeria are performing poorly. It is crucial to improve the performance of yam farmers for food security and poverty alleviation in the country. This paper investigates yam production in Nigeria and how it can be improved. The aim of this paper is to describe and compare yam production and its determinants in Nigeria. This research employed a multistage sampling technique in eliciting cross-sectional data from 360 farmers in Nigeria in 2013. Stochastic frontier and metafrontier analyses were used to determine factors affecting yam production. Descriptive statistics were used to discuss the Status of yam farmers and yam production. ANOVA was performed to determine similarities in variables between States. The result shows that yam production in Nigeria is dominated by middle-aged educated male farmers with large households and small farms. They have limited access to fund and extension services, and use insufficient inputs for yam production. The investigation also proves that farm size, labour and planting material are increasing factors of production. This research makes these three key recommendations for yam production in Nigeria. Government subsidy on inputs and the adoption of appropriate input dissemination strategies to ensure that inputs reach yam farmers in good condition and time; the use of labour-saving devices; and the development of alternative farming systems for yam to encourage mechanization.
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