FARM RESOURCE ALLOCATION AND PROFITABILITY OF ARABLE CROP ENTERPRISES IN THE HUMID FOREST INLAND VALLEY ECOSYSTEM: A CASE STUDY OF OZU ABAM IN SOUTHERN NIGERIA
AbstractUnique cropping systems have emerged in Nigeria to suit limited farmer resources and production objectives in humid forest inland valley ecosystems. But the basis for farm resource allocation and profitability of different crop enterprises are not properly understood. This study is based on a survey of 48 randomly selected farmers in the inland valley ecosystem of Southeast Nigeria. Information obtained from farmers was analysed using basic statistics and t values evaluated within a Cobb-Douglas production function. Results indicate that three arable crop enterprises; namely yam, cassava and rice; were cultivated by farmers based on different production objectives in the study area. The land area allocated to the rice enterprise is significantly higher than that allocated to the cassava and yam enterprises. But land rent would lead to a substantial reduction in rice production. While there is a competition for labour between upland and lowland crop production, the marginal productivity of excess labour in the cassava enterprise is almost zero. Yam setts constitute an important item in yam production and its production elasticity is negative. It is recommended that in order to improve farm income from crop production in inland valleys farmers should reduce investments in land rent and capital items and adopt improved planting materials.
(UNISWA J Agric: 2000 9: 48-56)