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CONTRIBUTIONS OF WOMEN TO HOUSEHOLD FARMING DECISIONS AMONG COCOA-BASED AGRO-FORESTRY HOUSEHOLDS IN EKITI STATE, NIGERIA

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CONTRIBUTIONS OF WOMEN TO HOUSEHOLD FARMING DECISIONS AMONG COCOA-BASED AGRO-FORESTRY HOUSEHOLDS IN EKITI STATE, NIGERIA

 

 

ABSTRACT

 

This study examined the contributions of women to household farming decisions among

cocoa-based agroforestry households in Ekiti state, Nigeria using cross-sectional data.

The study used purposive, multistage and random sampling techniques for the selection of

120 cocoa-based agroforestry farm units that constituted respondents for the study. The

analytical techniques involved descriptive statistics, exploratory factor analysis and

multinomial logistic regression model. With regards to food crop production activities, the

contributions of women to decision making were very high with mean values of between

2.48 – 3.19 on a 4-point scale, while that of the men were comparatively low with mean

values ranging from 1.85 – 2.66. However, in the cocoa production activities, the

contributions of women to decision making were relatively low with mean ranging between

1.42 – 3.23 compare to high contributions of men with mean values ranging from 2.82 –

3.94 on a 4-point scale.

 

The multinomial logistic regression result comparing high

contribution (3) as base outcome, revealed that years of formal education of the women,

financial contribution status of the women to farming activities, average number of hours

spent on cocoa farm per day were negatively related while years of farming experience of

the women and number of adult male farmers in a household were positively and

significantly related with the probability of women making low (1) or medium (2)

contributions to household farming decisions. The t-test of no significant difference

between the contributions of women and men to farming decisions in the production of the

integrated food crops and the cocoa revealed that, on the average, women had

significantly higher contributions to decision making in food crop production activities

while in cocoa production, men had significantly higher contributions. The identified

constraints militating against women farmers were classified into three major factors

using principal component factor analysis with varimax – rotated and factor loading of

0.30.

 

These constraints range from techno-institutional factor (lack of extension

programmes directed to women, lack of access to NGOs programmes and low technicalknow-

how); socio-personal factor (the belief that women are subordinate, low self

confidence of women, multiple domestic responsibilities of women farmers) and economic /

financial factor which include low/lack of financial contributions by women farmers to

farming activities, involvement of the women in off farm jobs, lack of collateral security to

secure loans to support farming and so on. The study, therefore, recommends inter alia,

socioeconomic empowerment of women farmers, adequate extension services and training

to meet technological improvement needs of the women and formulation of gender

sensitive policies in favour of women in agricultural sector

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