DETERMINANTS OF AGRICULTURAL PRODUCTION OF SMALL HOLDER FARMERS IN SANTCHOU
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Agricultural production plays a vital role in the economic development of many countries. In the case of smallholder farmers, who constitute a significant portion of agricultural producers in developing countries, their productivity and livelihoods are closely linked to their agricultural output. Economic factors, (such as access to credit, market opportunities), social factors, (including education levels, social capital, and access to information), and environmental factors (such as soil quality) have been shown to affect agricultural production. This study sought to identify the determinants of agricultural production among smallholder farmers in Santchou. Using a mixed-methods research design, qualitative and quantitative data was collected using a questionnaire and analyzed using SPSS (Statistical Package for the Social Sciences) V20. Out of the 50 smallholder farmers, majority were male (56%), and the average monthly income from agricultural activities reported was 89,000 FCFA. The most common practices include cultivating crops, rearing livestock, and fishing. The majority of smallholder farmers in Santchou own their land (68%) and have access to credit (64%). The frequency of agricultural extension services and training programs is also variable, with some farmers receiving them frequently (22%) and others rarely or never (44%). The majority of smallholder farmers in Santchou utilize multiple market channels to sell their agricultural products. They also sell their products on a regular basis, with the majority selling weekly (40%). However, there are a number of challenges that farmers face in accessing markets, including limited market infrastructure, lack of market information, and limited access to market outlets beyond local markets. Therefore, there is a need for targeted interventions and support to enhance farmers’ access to resources, improve market linkages, and promote sustainable farming practices in Santchou.
Keywords: Agricultural production, economic factor, social factor, environmental factor, Santchou.