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Stabrawa, Anna (1992)
Publisher: Natural Resources Institute
Languages: English
Types: Book
This report contains the results of a socio-economic survey of the maize/cassava farming and storage system in central Toga, and the impact of the Larger Grain Borer (LGB), Prostephanus truncatus (Horn) on that system. The report characterises the maize and cassava farming, storage and marketing systems and examines the impact of LGB. A further 3 month study scheduled for March-May 1992 will assess the cost-effectiveness of proposed control methods, carry out additional informal surveys and establish means of disseminating results. This will coincide with the end of the entomological component of the LGB project in Toga. The survey was conducted over three regions of central Toga (northern Plateaux, Centrale and Kara), where the storage of maize and cassava (known as "cassettes de manioc"), both of which are attacked by LGB, is widespread. All three regions fall within the Guinea Savanna agroecological zone, with annual rainfall of between 900-1500 mm and unimodal precipitation, resulting in a single cropping season. Using a two-stage random sample; 331 heads of households were interviewed in 65 villages in central Toga. The results of the survey are outlined in the summary of key characteristics (pages VII-VIII). In the survey area 66% of farmers grew both maize and cassava, 28% grew only maize and 5% only cassava, while just 2% grew neither crop. The study area is characterised by small-scale subsistence farming, with an average farm size of 4.4 ha, and low use of purchased inputs such as fertilizer and storage chemicals. The majority of respondents were under 36 years of age, with little or no formal education. Agriculture is the most important source of income for 90% of the survey sample, and livestock the second important source of income for 50%; only 16% had other sources of income. In farmers' opinion insects are their most important storage problem, and levels of damage were thought important for both crops by the majority during the reference period, the 1989/90 storage season, although only a minority thought levels of damage had increased. There are however important differences in cropping patterns, storage and marketing practices and farmers perceptions between the regions examined, suggesting a gradual decrease both in importance of maize and cassava cultivation, storage and insect problems with progress northwards, but an apparently increasing importance of both crops in consumption terms, which should be noted.
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    • TABLE 1: SURVEY POPULATION STRUCTURE (%) 6.8% 130.509 45.4% 41.528 14.4% 70.109
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