Factors influencing smallholder farmer participation in Cotton production in Zambia

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Musonda, Calyn
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University of Zambia
Cotton production offers substantial opportunities for economic growth and poverty reduction, especially among the rural farming households in Zambia and other developing countries. However, smallholder farmers are characterized by low participation in cotton production. Understanding the determinants of smallholder farmer participation in cotton production could lead to the design of interventions that would be effective in poverty reduction. This study uses Cragg's double hurdle model and panel data collected in 2004 and 2008 to identify the factors affecting smallholder farmer participation decisions in the four major cotton producing provinces of Central, Eastern, Lusaka and Southern. Empirical results from the regression analysis showed that demographic factors (such as age and sex of head), human capital (such as marital status, dependency ratio and adult equivalent) and institutional factors (such as access to credit and distance to nearest transport) increased the likelihood of participation while socio economic factors (such as off farm income ) made it less likely for households to participate. Therefore the study recommended that, an understanding of factors that affect cotton participation and how they relate to the participation decision, should be an important part in design of interventions aimed at improving production uptake.
Student Project Report
Cotton Trade-Zambia , Cotton Growing-Zambia , Farms, Small-Zambia