Asian Journal of Agricultural Extension, Economics & Sociology,
Aims: The major objective of this study is to find out the proportion of commercial poultry farmers in the study area who procure credit for financing the production and determine the effect of credit on commercialization level of poultry farming in three selected local government areas in Niger state. While the specific objectives are to describe the socioeconomic characteristics of poultry farmers in the area, determine the effect of credit on poultry output in the study area, estimate and compare poultry commercialization index of credit and non-credit beneficiaries in the study area, determine the effect of credit on level of commercialization of poultry farmers in the study area, and examine the constraints faced by poultry farmers in the study area.
Study Design: Cross-sectional study.
Place and Duration of Study: Department of Agricultural Economics and Extension Technology, Federal University of Technology, Minna, Nigeria, between January 2011 and April, 2012.
Methodology: The sampling frame for this study is the poultry farmers in Minna Area, Nigeria who are involved in commercial production of either broiler or layer birds. Those raising local chickens were excluded. The sample of 120 commercial poultry farmers were randomly selected from the three Local Governments from a list of poultry farmers obtained from the Niger State Agricultural Development Project (NSADP). Data for this study was collected using standardised questionnaire administered through personal interactions with the respondents. The data collected were analysed using descriptive statistics and frontier production function.
Results: The result suggests that the level of commercialisation is generally low among the respondents and shows no significant difference between beneficiaries and non-beneficiaries of credit although beneficiaries of credit seem to be more business-oriented than non-beneficiaries. Also, the estimates of the frontier model shows that only output in 2010, eggs collected in 2008 in crates, eggs collected in 2010 in crates, cost of construction of housing and cost of hired labour significantly affected poultry population, although eggs collected in 2008 had inverse relationship with population. On the other hand, only output in 2009 and cost of medication did not have any significant relationship with household commercialisation index (HCI).
Conclusion: Most of the factors increased technical efficiency suggesting that the farmers tend to manage their farms very efficiently. In view of this, the farmers should be encouraged to see the need to use credit to enhance production and hence increase their HCI. There is need for the farmers to use enhanced production system like battery cage so as to reduce labour input for cleaning the housing.