Demographic characteristics, agricultural and technological profile of acha farmers in Nigeria
Keywords:acha farmers, agriculture, demographic characteristics, digitaria spp, Nigeria, technological profile
A quantitative research was undertaken to determine the demographic characteristics, agricultural and technological profile of acha farmers using structured questionnaire. The demographic profile of the respondents showed that 44% of the farmers are 30 - 44 years old, 25% aged 45 - 59 years, 17% are 15 - 29 years old and 10% are 5 - 14 years old, while 4% represented those of 60 years and above. Farmers that had no formal education were 57%, those that went through adult education were 8%, while the remaining 18%, 14% and 3% had primary, secondary and tertiary education respectively. Regarding agricultural profile the study showed that most of the acha farmers have farm holdings of less than 3 ha and most of them planted the white acha (Digitaria exilis) variety. All the farmers use manual power, emanating from self, hired, family or communal labour employing the hand-tool technology. Acha production and processing is at zero mechanization level, therefore 100% of the farmers indicated a desire for the mechanization of acha farming operations. This information is an indication that acha production needs to be mechanized and this can be done by introducing simple motorized technologies affordable to the farmers.