Challenges and Prospects of Smallholder Oil Palm Production in Awka Agricultural Zone of Anambra State, Nigeria
AbstractThe study examined the challenges and prospects of smallholder oil palm production in Awka Agricultural Zone of Anambra State. Seventy two smallholder oil palm farmers were interviewed for the purpose of eliciting information. Smallholder oil palm farmers in Awka Agricultural Zone were educated (79.2% - Senior Secondary School Certificate and above) and fairly economically stable with 41.7% and 18.1% earning more than ₦40,000.00 and between ₦30,001.00- ₦40,000.00 per month respectively from the oil palm enterprise. Oil palm production practices were characterized with the use of unimproved varieties/natural regeneration (M=0.97); use of baskets for seed germination (M=0.69) and manual harvesting (M=0.88). The challenges of smallholder oil palm production included: high cost of land (M=2.79; SD=0.63); lack of access to credit (M=2.75; SD=0.62); lack of improved planting materials- seeds/seedlings (M=2.51; SD=0.73); lack of storage facilities (M=2.50; SD=0.77) and lack of processing facilities (M=2.44; SD=0.84). In spite of these challenges, the perceived prospects of oil palm production in the zone were enormous, namely; as source of revenue for government and the citizens (M=2.99; SD=0.59); could raise the standard of living of smallholder farmers (M=2.97; SD=0.58); increase in oil palm output/yield (M=2.93; SD=0.83); increase in farmers’ income (M=89; SD=0.80) and improvement in food security (M=2.88; SD=0.60). The study recommended among other things the provision of access to credit and loan facilities, improved varieties of planting materials, modern harvesting, processing and storage facilities.
JAE supports free online communication and exchange of knowledge as the most effective way of ensuring that the fruits of research and development practice are made widely available. It is therefore committed to open access, which, for authors, enables the widest possible dissemination of their findings and, for readers, increases their ability to discover pertinent information. The Journal adopts and uses the CC BY-NC-ND license. Under this license users are permitted to: Copy and distribute the article (non-commercially); you can’t change or alter the article in anyway; Users are not allowed to data mine the article.
- Authors are able to enter into separate, additional contractual arrangements for the non-exclusive distribution of the journal's published version of the work (e.g., post it to an institutional repository or publish it in a book), with an acknowledgement of its initial publication in this journal.
- Authors are permitted and encouraged to post their work online (e.g., in institutional repositories or on their website) prior to and during the submission process, as it can lead to productive exchanges, as well as earlier and greater citation of published work (See The Effect of Open Access).