Journal of Environmental and Agricultural Sciences (JEAS). Sungbaahee and Kpieta, 2020. Volume 22(1): 71-81
Open Access – Research Article
Smallholder Farmers’ Profit Margin on Sustainable Land Management Practices in Ghana
Sylvester Sungbaahee 1,*, Alfred B. Kpieta 1
1 Department of Environment and Resource Studies, Faculty of Integrated Development Studies, University for Development Studies, Tamale (Wa-Campus), Ghana
Abstract: Cereal crop yields have declined over the years due to mainly declining soil fertility. In the context of other stressors such as climate change, declining yields continue to have negative effects on food security and environmental sustainability. In many small-holder farming across the developing world including Ghana, the emphasis has shifted towards sustainable land management practices for soil fertility improvement in farming. While the approach has gained popularity in policy circles, the profitability of these practices is not clearly understood especially among smallholder farmers. In this paper we used quantitative methods to explore the profit margins on the use of three sustainable land management practices-animal manure, compost and minimum tillage in two Districts of semi-arid northern Ghana to advise agricultural policy. Our findings were that, farmers largely use sacks and head pans in the application of animal manure and compost including the hiring and borrowing of other tools. Minimum tillage application requires mainly Knap sack sprayers and weedicides. The estimated mean cost of these tools for the application of the respective practices were Ghana cedi (GH¢) 449.2, 467.56 and 131.73 for animal manure, compost and minimum tillage respectively. The profit margins as well as sensitivity analysis of the practices were carried out using partial budget analysis. The results showed profit margins of GH¢ 448.2, GH¢327.5 and GH¢98.2 per acre per production season for animal manure, compost and minimum tillage respectively compared to GH¢15.3 when the farmer is not applying any of the three practices. The study concluded by recommending that small holder farmers should be provided with guaranteed markets for their produce and demonstration fields should also be encouraged to increase profitability of small holder farmers’ investment on the land.
Keywords: Animal manure; compost; minimum tillage; cost; profitability; sensitivity; smallholders; sustainable land management practices.
*Corresponding author: Sylvester Sungbaahee: email@example.com
Cite this article as: Sungbaahee, S. and A.B. Kpieta. 2020. Smallholder farmers’ profit margin on sustainable land management practices in Ghana. Journal of Environmental and Agricultural Sciences 22(1): 71-81.
Copyright © Sungbaahee and Kpieta et al., 2020. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium provided the original author and source are appropriately cited and credited.