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Sustainability 2018, 10(2), 555; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10020555

Farmers’ Perceptions and Factors Influencing the Adoption of No-Till Conservation Agriculture by Small-Scale Farmers in Zashuke, KwaZulu-Natal Province

Department of Agriculture, University of Zululand, Private Bag X1001, KwaDlangezwa 3886, South Africa
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Received: 6 November 2017 / Revised: 29 December 2017 / Accepted: 15 January 2018 / Published: 23 February 2018
(This article belongs to the Section Sustainable Agriculture, Food and Wildlife)
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Abstract

The adoption of conservation agriculture among small-scale farmers is still low despite the proven economic and environmental benefits of the technology. This study was conducted in Ingwe Municipality in Kwa-Zashuke, Ward 8, in KwaZulu-Natal province. The main aim of the study was to determine the factors that influence the adoption of no-till conservation agriculture (CA) in the study area and to explore farmers’ perceptions of no-till CA and the impact of no-till CA on maize yield. A quantitative approach employing a cross-sectional design was used to gather data. Stratified random sampling was employed and a total of 185 small-scale farmers (97 adopters and 88 non-adopters) were sampled. Data analysis was done through descriptive and inferential statistics and econometric modeling using the logistic regression model. Findings show that farmers’ positive perceptions were positively correlated with higher maize yields. While an increase in extension visits, age, education and farmers’ positive perceptions significantly increased the likelihood of a farmer adopting no-till CA, an increase in land size was negatively related to no-till CA adoption. The findings confirm the important role of extension in the promotion of no-till CA, particularly the intensity of the extension services. The study recommends a deliberate effort by all stakeholders to promote the participation of young people in farming and tailor-make current no-till CA programs to suit the illiterate households. The capacity of extension programs to adequately support farmers should be enhanced through improvements in extension services. There is also need to change people’s mindsets and the way they view no-till CA. View Full-Text
Keywords: adoption; conservation agriculture; no-till; small-scale farmer adoption; conservation agriculture; no-till; small-scale farmer
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).
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Ntshangase, N.L.; Muroyiwa, B.; Sibanda, M. Farmers’ Perceptions and Factors Influencing the Adoption of No-Till Conservation Agriculture by Small-Scale Farmers in Zashuke, KwaZulu-Natal Province. Sustainability 2018, 10, 555.

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