Factors influencing the adoption of conservation agriculture practices among smallholder farmers in Mozambique
This study aimed to identify the factors that influence smallholder farmers’ decisions to adopt four different conservation agriculture (CA) practices (i.e. minimum tillage, intercropping, cover cropping and crop rotation) in Mozambique. A non-probability sampling approach, incorporating both purposive and accidental sampling types, was followed. Three agro-ecological regions, followed by four provinces, were purposely selected. In addition, Accidental sampling was used to select 616 smallholder farmers from 38 communities in the three agro-ecological regions where CA projects were historically implemented by several NGO institutions. A questionnaire was administered to the 616 selected smallholder farmers. A descriptive logit model was applied in STATA to determine the probability of respondents adopting CA practices. The findings show that 44.6% of smallholder farmers adopted one or more of the CA practices, and 55.4% did not. It was also clear that most farmers did not adopt all components CA. Results obtained revealed that household size, animal ownership, communication assets (such as television, radio, and cell phone) and group membership had a positive influence on CA adoption. Interestingly, female-headed households were more likely to adopt CA. Awareness of soil health decline is an important factor determining adoption. The study concluded that the reasons for adoption are site-specific and a ‘blanket approach’ to promote adoption of CA is unlikely to be successful.
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