Limited usage of mechanical equipment in small-scale rice farming: a cause for concern
AbstractThe role of mechanization in agriculture is well documented in terms of improving productivity of farm labour and land and sustaining income status and welfare of small-scale farmers. In rice production, there is a high cost associated with labour intensive production practices especially in land preparation, weeding and harvesting, the limited adoption of mechanical equipment in these operations remains an issue of concern. The current study investigates the usage of mechanical equipment in a setting where majority of farmers are exposed to technologies but cases of non-usage/adoption are observed. The choice of usage of mechanical equipment is analysed through probit and poisson models. Mechanization generally has a positive effect on production. However, the cost associated with its usage high. The equipment should be made available and affordable to farmers especially because demand for rent is not met. Awareness is essential for adoption and ease of use of mechanization.
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