Determinants for smallholder farmers’ adoption of improved forages in dairy production systems: The case of Tanga region, Tanzania
Dairy productivity in sub-Saharan Africa remains below its potential, while there is an increasing demand for milk from its growing population. This study focuses on the adoption potential of improved, more nutritive and productive forages by smallholder farmers in the Tanga region of Tanzania. By applying a qualitative mixed-method approach, including farm visits, interviews and a multi-stakeholder workshop guided by the Qualitative Assessment Tool for Forage Technologies (QATo-FT), we systematically identify and analyse the roles of the (i) institutional and political, (ii) socio-economic and (iii) cultural factors influencing the adoption and diffusion of improved forage technologies. The findings reveal the unsuitable cool climate and unfavourable socioeconomic conditions, including low labour opportunity costs in the dry season as critical reasons for the low current adoption rate. However, a positive community attitude, the recognised ecological benefits and the supporting role of promoting institutions are the main influencing factors of a high adoption potential. Yet, the political and institutional framework at the regional level, as well as the market conditions, negatively influence the adoption potential. We suggest an integrated approach for rural development that goes beyond the improvement of yields, but provides more efficient use of land and labour in the region.
Tim Ndah, Hycenth; Schuler, Johannes; Nkwain, Vandoline N.; Nzogela, Beatus; Mangesho, Walter; Mollel, Richard; Loina, Rose; Zander, Peter; Paul, Birthe