Report from a student within the SILT (Sustainable Intensification of Legume Technology in Tanzania) project with backstopping from N2Africa.
Legume crops play important roles economically, socially and environmentally by providing jobs, being a cheap source of protein, improving health and nutrition, improving soil fertility, weed suppression and nitrogen fixation. However, it is yet to be clearly determined as to which approach or a combination of approaches that are effective in ensuring legume technologies are disseminated across the various farming groups. The current study aimed at assessing the effectiveness of awareness creation approaches on level of knowledge, adoption and willingness of smallholder farmers to pay for improved legume technologies and explore other factors associated with adoption and willingness to pay for the technologies in Gairo and Mvomero districts. The study adopted a cross-sectional research design whereby data were collected once from Gairo and Mvomero Districts, Morogoro, Tanzania. The districts were purposively selected due to a number of multimedia approaches and other extension methods that had been used to raise farmers’ awareness of improved legume technologies. A total of 400 respondents participated in this study of whom about two thirds were from the area of intervention and a third were from the area with no intervention. Primary data was collected through a questionnaire, key informant interviews and focus group discussions. Data was analysed using SPSS whereby descriptive and inferential statistics were determined. Results show that smallholder farmers were aware of all the technologies assessed and the level of awareness differed across the treatments. Factors significantly associated with smallholder farmers awareness were availability of legume technology intervention (P<0.01) and total revenue from income generating activities (P<0.05). In addition, the results also show that less than a quarter of respondents adopted/cultivated improved common bean seeds. Generally, factors significantly (P<0.05) associated with adoption of improved common bean seeds were availability of legume technology intervention, total area cultivated, total income from other income generating activities (IGA), borrowing money from any financial source and household size. On the other hand, results show that on overall more than two thirds of the farmers were willing and ready to pay for at least one technology out of six technologies assessed. Results also show that factors positively and significantly (P<0.05) associated with smallholder farmers willingness to pay for the technologies included availability of legume technology intervention, total revenue from IGA, being a member of a farmers' association and visit by extension officer. It can generally be concluded that, the surveyed farmers had moderate uptake for improved bean technologies which farmers’ pinned to lack of knowledge on how to use the inputs and lack of capital or prevailing high input prices. Therefore, the study recommends that, awareness creation should continue and target those farmers who have not adopted improved bean technologies. In order to increase farmers’ knowledge, adoption and willingness to pay for improved legume technologies there is a need for reduction of technology prices or provision of subsidies.
MSc and Bcs thesis, internship reports