Determinants of change in animal manure use level in banana production in Uganda
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Banana yield in Uganda has declined during the past years 20 years due to declining soil fertility, reduced labor availability and increased pests and diseases. Despite the increase in the acreage, under banana production, there are no indications of improvement in the production of this staple food and major income earner. This decline in yield has affected household income and threatened people’s livelihood. To reverse this trend, the fertilizer option can be adopted, but inorganic fertilizers are expensive. Hence, organic fertilizers like animal manure, which is readily available on the farm, can be a good alternative. T he level of use of animal manure on bananas and its determinants is not well known. This study aims to fill this knowledge gap to determine the factors that influence manure use and determine the effect of manure use on banana production. The study used household data gathered by the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) and the Faculty of Agriculture(FA), Makerere University between November 2000 – July 2001 and by the Foundation for Advanced Studies on International Development(FASID) and FA in August-December 2003. The data was gathered from households that grew bananas (N=177) in the study period (2000-2003). The results show that of the 177 farmers, 17% increased their manure use, 21% decreased while 62% did not change. Difference of mean tests were performed to determine differences among households in the three categories (increased, decreased and constant). The probit model was used to identify and quantify the relationship among factors underlying change in manure use. Increase in cattle holding, contact with extension agents and change in number of family members providing labour positively & significantly influence animal manure use level. Multiple Linear Regression Analysis was used to determine the effect of change in manure use on the value of bananas produced. The results show that the value of bananas produced significantly increases with age and education level of the household head, farm size and family labor endowment.