Influence of information channels on maize farmers\' adoption of innovations in the northern extension service zone of Edo State, Nigeria
The study examined how different communication channels influenced the awareness and adoption behaviour of maize farmers in the northern extension service zone of Edo state, Nigeria. One hundred and fifty six (156) maize farmers were randomly selected to solicit information about the influence of different communication channels in the awareness and adoption of improved agricultural technologies. Sampled farmers ranked other farmers high (62.8%) followed by farm visits by extension agents (51.9%) as sources of information on improved maize technologies. Of the 5 identified maize technologies in the study area, farmers average level of innovation awareness was higher (mean = 4) as compared to low level of adoption (mean = 2). Farmers level of technology awareness was strongly influenced by farm visits by other farmers (X2 = 12.88), extension agents (X2 = 11.48), radio (X2 = 4.93) and television (X2 = 11.07) while extension agents (X2 = 4.94) and radio (X2 = 10.04) played a significant role in their adoption of improved maize practices. The relationship between television was not statistically significant. Recommendations included increased emphasis being given to use of contact farmers (farmer-to-farmer extension), extension agents, radio and television in disseminating agricultural information to farmers.
Keywords: Communication channels, adoption behaviour, maize, farmers, technology.
South African Journal of Agricultural Extension Vol. 36 (1) 2007: pp. 28-38