Gender Disparities in the Adoption of Drought Tolerant Legumes a Case of Farmer Research Network Project, Singida District, Tanzania


Authors : Joyce Fidelis Rutatina; Justin K. Urassa

Volume/Issue : Volume 8 - 2023, Issue 1 - January

Google Scholar : https://bit.ly/3IIfn9N

Scribd : https://bit.ly/3Y2vcjO

DOI : https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.7587970

Legumes are an important and affordable source of protein for the majority of poor Tanzanians. In addition, intercropping legumes and cereals improves soil fertility and increases farmers’ productivity. However, smallholder farmers remain poor, mostly producing at the subsistence level. Therefore, the study aimed at assessing gender disparities in the adoption of legumes (pigeon peas and lablab), using the Singida- RECODA-Farmer Research Network (FRN) project as a case study. Specifically, it determined the project’s gender sensitivity, differences in adoption of pigeon peas and lablab and the associated challenges faced by the project beneficiaries. The study adopted a cross-sectional research design, whereby a questionnaire was used to collect primary data from 205 randomly selected respondents; this was complemented by focus group discussions and key informant interviews. In addition, secondary data was obtained from the project’s documents. IBM-SPSS and content analysis were used to analyze quantitative and qualitative data respectively. The question to whether the RECODA-FRN Project was gender sensitive was answered through study findings which shows that the RECODA-FRN Project was gender sensitive, and it created an equal opportunity for all gender groups to fully participate, thus, enabling them to adopt the legumes. In addition, the question to how adoption of legumes differ in terms of sex was addressed as findings show a positive and significant (p ≤ 0.05) association between ones sex and adoption of pigeon peas, unlike lablab. Nonetheless, one’s age was not significantly associated with the adoption of either pigeon peas or lablab. Additionally, in identifying challenges faced by the RECODA-FRN project beneficiaries, the study findings show that farmers faced many challenges in cultivation of the legumes these include pests, limited availability of seeds, the legumes not being preferred for household consumption, limited availability of land, and lack of markets. Thus, it is recommended that women’s access and control over land needs to be improved to enable them engage better in legumes production for their households improved well- being. In addition, the RECODA-FRN project and Singida district council’s agricultural department need to educate the farming community about lablab's potential and how to produce it in such a way that it does not interfere with the growth of other crops. Lastly, the farmers need training on better, environmentally friendly ways of controlling the pests and diseases currently affecting the productivity of pigeon peas and lablab.

Keywords : Smallholder farmers, Gender disparities, Adoption, Legumes, pigeon peas, labla, Tanzania

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