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Agriculture 2016, 6(2), 22; doi:10.3390/agriculture6020022

Small Scale Farmers’ Indigenous Agricultural Adaptation Options in the Face of Declining or Stagnant Crop Yields in the Fako and Meme Divisions of Cameroon

Département de Géographie, Université de Montréal, Pavillon 520, ch. de la Côte-Sainte-Catherine, Local 332-3, Montréal, Québec H3C 3J7, Canada
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Academic Editors: Annelie Holzkämper and Sibylle Stöckli
Received: 27 February 2016 / Revised: 12 May 2016 / Accepted: 18 May 2016 / Published: 24 May 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Options for Agricultural Adaptation to Climate Change)
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Abstract

Research has proven that, at a national scale in Cameroon, arable crop production is either declining or stagnant. In the face of these trends, governments, local and international organizations, communities and peasant farmers have developed adaptation options to sustain arable production and reduce poverty. Given this general context, and based on population perceptions and four study sites in the Southwest region of Cameroon, this study aims at verifying current trends in arable production and farmers’ adaptation options based on their indigenous knowledge. These analyses are based on the administration of 200 questionnaires and two focus group discussions (FGDs). The data were analysed using SPSS version 20 in which frequencies, percentages and means were calculated. In addition, the chi-squared statistical test of goodness of fit was calculated and the stated hypothesis was validated accordingly. The FGDs were analysed through verbatim transcriptions and with the aid of the context analysis software, Wordstat 7. The results show that current yields (2010–2014) in all the study sites are declining due to deforestation, poor governance, inadequate access to farm inputs such as fertilizers, increased economic opportunities elsewhere and a breakdown of cultural practices, while 10 years (2000–2010) previously, they had been increasing. It has also been found that the main adaptation options/coping mechanisms reported by the respondents in order of highest frquencies are: expansion of farm size, help from relatives and dependents that live on the farm, supplemental occupations or livelihood diversification and usage of organic fertilizers. From the chi-squared test, the alternate hypothesis that, “there is some difference between population proportions for different adaptation options or coping mechanisms” is validated. View Full-Text
Keywords: adaptation; crop yields; expansion of farmland; supplemental occupations adaptation; crop yields; expansion of farmland; supplemental occupations
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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MDPI and ACS Style

Epule, T.E.; Bryant, C.R. Small Scale Farmers’ Indigenous Agricultural Adaptation Options in the Face of Declining or Stagnant Crop Yields in the Fako and Meme Divisions of Cameroon. Agriculture 2016, 6, 22.

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