South African Journal of Agricultural Extension <p>The <em>South African Journal of Agricultural Extension</em>aims to: * advance and apply the science of extension and of rural development as scientific discipline by stimulating thought, study, research, discussion and the publication and exchange of knowledge both nationally and internationally. * promote the professionalism, status and dignity of the extension profession amongst the scientific fraternity, the general public and with the studying youth. * practise the natural-, economic- and managerial sciences responsibly and in public interest. * act as representative mouthpiece for the extension profession in agriculture. </p> <p>As of February 2018, this journal content is open access online.</p> <p>Other websites related to this journal: <a href=""></a> and <a id="m_-342953637508093746LPlnk440663" href="" target="_blank" rel="noopener" data-saferedirecturl=";source=gmail&amp;ust=1698845838372000&amp;usg=AOvVaw1EXR1155rfeszaixULbfef"></a></p> en-US Copyright for articles published in this journal is retained by the journal. All articles published in this journal are licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) license. (Dr Fanie Terblanché) (Dr Jan Swanepoel (SASAE Secretariat)) Fri, 26 Jan 2024 06:22:28 +0000 OJS 60 Cost and returns analysis of snail production in Obio-Akpor Local Government Area, Rivers State, Nigeria <p><em>The study examined snail production cost and return analysis in Obio-Akpor Local Government Area of Rivers State, Nigeria. The study draws its essence from the fact that the supply of protein to the increasing population of Nigeria is inadequate. Given its profitability level, snail farming can serve as an important protein supplement to bridge the food insecurity gap. Through field surveys, copies of structured questionnaires were employed for collecting data from 40 snail farmers, who were randomly sampled. The analytical tools include frequencies, percentages, budgetary techniques, multiple regression, and mean scores. The results showed that snail farming was dominated by males (65%). The farmers were predominantly aged between 21 and 59, with a 67.5% score. Budgetary analysis showed that the farmers received a monthly net farm income of ₦113,000 (275.494 USD) and a gross margin of ₦1 345 000 (3279.11 USD), thus entailing the enterprise's profitability. Results of the multiple regression showed that variables like marital status and the purpose for farming were significant in determining the profitability status of snail farmers. Lack of collateral to secure loans to support farming and the problem of disease infected from contamination were some of the critical factors which constrained snail production, both jointly having a mean score of 3.35. It is recommended that the government give surety to registered farmers who do not have collateral to secure loans. </em></p> I.K. Agbugba, K.S. Agbagwa, J.S. Kau, J.C. Ugwuegbulem Copyright (c) 2024 Fri, 26 Jan 2024 00:00:00 +0000 Identifying the causes of failure in the Communal Property Associations (CPAs), state owned and household farms. <p><em>CPAs, state-owned and household citrus farmers, are important within the citrus fruit group by value and volume. Their success could increase exports, job opportunities, foreign exchange revenue, rural development, and economic growth. This study provides the results of the causes of failure in the CPA's, state-owned and household citrus farms in Mpumalanga Province. The study used primary data collected from a random sample of 150 citrus farm managers, and SPSS was used to analyse the results. The causes of failure within these farming sectors are linked to a lack of participation in drafting business plans. In the study area, government departments or agencies drafted business plans for farmers. </em>Farmers preferred the <em>employment of direct or extended owners, relatives/family members with little experience in managing a farm business, yet they were not competent in managing the farms viably. The high input costs were the biggest cause of failure, and farmers sometimes could not ensure that irrigation water was available when needed. An increased protectionism in the lucrative markets was also listed as one of the causes affecting all farmers; hence, farmers could not access any new markets. This study thus recommends the involvement of farmers in the drafting of business plans and the employment of more local community members with skills in farming, sound farming experience and improved level of education. </em></p> T.D. Manenzhe, E.M. Zwane, J.A. Van Niekerk Copyright (c) 2024 Fri, 26 Jan 2024 00:00:00 +0000 Exploring information needs and diverse sources for the growth and sustainability of the South African honeybush industry <p><em>Honeybush is an indigenous fynbos shrub with the potential to contribute significantly to socio-economic development in rural South Africa. However, there exists a knowledge gap on the types of information that role players in this emerging agricultural sector need to produce quality honeybush tea efficiently, as well as their preferences for obtaining information and guidance materials. A survey of 44 role players along the Honeybush value chain was conducted to determine the nature of the information they require and their preferred communication formats. The results show that the most pressing need is information about general honeybush cultivation, followed by detailed guidance on cultivating different species and implementing quality management systems, such as organic certification. Respondents also highlighted the urgency of improving consumer awareness of honeybush tea. Other information related to sustainable cultivation practices, enhancing the industry’s sustainability and helping with marketing. Respondents preferred information from research institutions and wanted to receive the information in a face-to-face (interpersonal) format. These findings could help to improve agricultural extension and fill knowledge gaps in the South African honeybush industry.</em></p> B.V.P. Du Preez, M. Joubert, C. Bester, E. Joubert Copyright (c) 2024 Fri, 26 Jan 2024 00:00:00 +0000 Farmers' production practices, incidence and management of pests and diseases, extension services, and factors limiting cotton production and quality in South Africa <p><em>Cotton is one of the essential cash crops; however, several factors, such as low yields and pest and disease infestations, affect the production. In South Africa, cotton production has increased among small-scale farmers since the late 1990s. Although the crop is not new to South African farmers, no recent information reflects the current status of cotton production practices. A study evaluated farmers' production practices, the incidence and management of pests and diseases, extension services, and factors limiting cotton production and quality in South Africa. One hundred and forty farmers, mainly smallholder farmers, were interviewed during the 2017/18 growing season. Most farmers planted genetically modified (GM) cotton on less than 5 ha of cotton, with 96% planting under dryland. Most farmers neither practised conservation agriculture (95%) nor conducted soil analyses (87%). A mean cottonseed yield of 700 kg ha<sup>-1</sup></em> <em>was reported on dryland cotton, and 5 000 kg ha<sup>-1</sup></em> <em>was obtained from irrigated cotton. Most of the farmers (99%) harvested their cotton by handpicking. Farmers' pest knowledge was higher than their knowledge of different diseases. Most participants were unaware of nematodes (88%) or disease-resistant cultivars (74%), while 91% were aware of insect-resistant cultivars. Extension officers only mentored and supported many respondents (82%). Most farmers (93%) relied on pesticides to control cotton pests, and the rest (7%) used biological control. Climatic conditions (98%), labour costs (88%), and insect infestations (42%) were identified as the main constraints in cotton production. Although this study had a limited number of surveyed farmers, it gives some insight into their knowledge and challenges. </em></p> L.N. Malinga, M.D. Laing Copyright (c) 2024 Fri, 26 Jan 2024 00:00:00 +0000 Smallholder maize farmer’s willingness to join index insurance in Vhembe District: Limpopo Province <p><em>Only a negligible proportion of smallholder farmers in South Africa have crop insurance to mitigate production risks. This article analyses the demand for index-based crop insurance by smallholder farmers in the Vhembe district of Limpopo Province in South Africa based on their willingness to join a proposed insurance product. Questionnaires were used to collect once-off data from smallholder farmers. The contingent valuation method was used to analyse the willingness to buy a crop insurance product. Analysis revealed that 86% of the farmers were willing to purchase index-based crop insurance. Further analysis using the Probit regression model found that age, farm size, and risk management strategies such as government assistance and crop diversification influenced smallholder farmers` willingness to join the proposed crop insurance products. This study has shown that smallholder crop farmers` willingness to join crop insurance is high in the Vhembe district. The study recommends awareness and education concerning crop insurance purchases for smallholder farmers. </em></p> H. Mukwevho, U. Luvhengo, S.S. Letsoalo, J.N. Lekunze Copyright (c) 2024 Fri, 26 Jan 2024 00:00:00 +0000 Assessing awareness and perceptions towards the existence of indigenous foods in Port St Johns of the Eastern Cape South Africa <p><em>Intolerably high rates of food insecurity and micronutrient deficiencies still prevail at an alarming rate in rural poor communities that practice subsistence farming. Even though indigenous fruits and vegetables are abundantly available and are easily accessible in these rural communities. The consumption of indigenous vegetables and fruits can combat food insecurity and micro-nutrient deficiencies in resource-constrained communities. This is attributed to negative perceptions shared among rural communities, specifically the younger generation, who are unaware of indigenous foods. Against this background, the study was developed to assess awareness and perceptions towards indigenous fruits and vegetables in Port St. Johns of the Eastern Cape Province of South Africa. A multi-stage sampling technique was used to evaluate the availability of the perceptions of households and the contribution of indigenous fruits and vegetables to household food security. A total of 340 respondents were purposively selected in the study area. A positive impact on household food security was revealed, suggesting that consuming indigenous fruits and vegetables may address rural household dietary diversity and food insecurity. The study argues that indigenous fruits and vegetables may be used as a food security coping strategy at the household level in rural areas, given their availability, especially in summer. Additionally, dispelling several negative perceptions and targeting consumption drivers will enhance the food security nexus of indigenous fruits and vegetables at the household level. </em></p> S.S. Ntlanga, P. Jiba, M. Christian, L. Mdoda Copyright (c) 2024 Fri, 26 Jan 2024 00:00:00 +0000 Climate change impact and adaptation of agro-pastoral farmers in Awerial County, Lakes State of South Sudan <p><em>This study examined the impact of climate change and weather-related extremities on the livelihoods of agro-pastoral farmers to identify the climate change adaptation practices adopted by the climate-affected households in Awerial County of South Sudan. A mixed methods approach was utilised. 401 respondents were interviewed using individual questionnaires and focus group discussions. The study’s results showed that agro-pastoralists perceive climate change as occurring in the study location, as evidenced by perceived increases in temperature, rainfall variability, and increased frequency of floods and droughts. Climate change also impacts livelihoods, as can be seen from livestock losses, increased food insecurity, loss of inputs, deforestation, and diminished water for livestock and domestic purposes. In the face of climate change, agro-pastoral farmers adapt by planting trees, crop/livestock diversification, mixed farming, soil and water conservation, reduction in livestock numbers, adjustment of planting dates, irrigation, and application of fertilisers. However, adaptation to climate change by agro-pastoral farmers is constrained by limited access to credit, lack of skills/information and access to agriculture inputs/technologies. The extension message includes strengthening local early warning systems, livelihood diversification and promotion of climate-sensitive agricultural practices for agro-pastoralists. </em></p> Z. Ndebele, M. Zenda Copyright (c) 2024 Fri, 26 Jan 2024 00:00:00 +0000 Measuring women’s empowerment in agriculture in the Gauteng Province of South Africa <p><em>Commercial restrictions limit the extent of women's participation in the South African economy despite gender equality being valued. Since the implementation of The Women Empowerment Project in 1999, the agricultural sector's contribution has not yet been fully quantified. Women’s opportunities, challenges, and roles in agriculture must be explored further by evaluating resource management strategies and policies. This study aimed to quantify women's empowerment in agriculture using descriptive research methodology. Data were collected and statistically analysed using the Women’s Empowerment in Agriculture Index (WEAI) to identify the origin and extent of female farmers' difficulties. Satisfactory outcomes in production, leadership, assets, income, and time usage were more strongly associated with empowerment than demographic variables, and time available contributed the most to women feeling disempowered. Overall, women reported feeling more empowered compared to men. Disempowerment in male respondents as the control group was attributed to time, workload, and resources. In future studies, gender policies should be further developed to incorporate gender dimension, gender budgeting and sex-disaggregated data administration. </em></p> K. Thobejane , J. Swanepoel, J. Van Niekerk, H. Van Der Merwe Copyright (c) 2024 Fri, 26 Jan 2024 00:00:00 +0000 Exploring the challenges faced by the small-scale dairy farmers in Bojanala Platinum District Municipality in North-West Province, South Africa <p><em>In developing countries, livestock in the form of small-scale dairy farming is often a primary source of food security and revenue for rural communities. Despite this, decreasing dairy production in rural areas is a great concern. This study explored the challenges of small-scale dairy farmers (SSDFs) in the Bojanala Platinum District of the North West Province, South Africa. A qualitative study was conducted using purposive and snowball sampling techniques among SSDFs in the district to uncover the challenges confronting them. Twenty‑four in‑depth interviews were conducted with farmers, and data were analysed using the thematic content analysis technique (TCA). Eight themes emerged from the data analysis: the high cost of feed and fertiliser, diseases and the high cost of medication, unpredictable weather patterns, power failure, high cost of electricity, cattle theft, lack of machinery and equipment and lack of support. SSDFs should be made aware and trained on identifying and managing livestock diseases, and prevention strategies for livestock theft should be developed and implemented. The study also recommends that local governments subsidise and support SSDFs to manage and sustain their businesses. Furthermore, the SSDFs should be exposed to agricultural funders in their localities, and access to educational services should be made available for local farmers to receive training towards proposal writing to apply for funds. In future, studies can look at the knowledge and literacy of farmers in sourcing funds to support their dairy farming business. </em></p> O.P. Mokoena, T.S. Ntuli, T. Ramarumo, S.M. Seeletse Copyright (c) 2024 Fri, 26 Jan 2024 00:00:00 +0000 Undergraduate agricultural extension qualifications in South Africa: Comparing available curricula to desired skills and competencies <p><em>Globally, the need for the agricultural extension profession to change from a top-down, production-focused approach to a more participatory and holistic approach has been reiterated. Different stakeholders in South Africa have criticised the public sector service delivery efficiency. To enhance the standard of service, the South African government has specified that every person employed as an agricultural extension worker in the public sector should have a minimum of a bachelor's degree. The department has made much progress. Currently, 73% of all extension professionals in the public sector have a minimum of a bachelor's degree. Despite this, the department still highlights training as inadequate regarding the profession's needs. A proficient agricultural extension sector is vital in assisting farmers in dealing with challenges and enhancing food security. This article examines the available undergraduate bachelor qualifications in agricultural extension in South Africa to determine their relevance in the competencies and skills required by the profession. The curriculum evaluation and improvement model is used as methodology, and coding is used as an analytical tool. The results show that available curricula are still excessively focused on technical subject matter and expertise, and there is an urgent need for updating curricula to be more relevant to the profession's needs. </em></p> L. Von Maltitz, J.A. Van Niekerk Copyright (c) 2024 Fri, 26 Jan 2024 00:00:00 +0000