Household Segmentation in Food Insecurity and Soil Improving Practices in Ghana
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There is a persistent problem of poor agricultural production which leads to household food insecurity problems for farmers in Ghana. Studies show that the adoption of improved agricultural practices and technology may help stabilize production, and lessen food insecurity problems. There, however, is a missing link between food insecurity and adoption of soil improving practices in the literature. The missing link is addressed by investigation whether the food insecurity group differs in adopting the use of soil improving practices. Conversely, the adoption of soil improving practices may influence a household’s food security position. With this in mind, the objectives of study are to determine the 1) likelihood of adopting the soil improving practices of Ghanaian households; and 2) determine if and how food insecure agricultural households differ from food secure agricultural households in terms of agricultural practices, household characteristics, and technologies adopted. A conditional logit model, based on random utility theory, is estimated to determine which factors affect adoption of soil improving practices; whereas, a multinomial logit model is used to examine factors influencing a household’s food insecurity position. Positions considered are chronic, seasonal, vulnerable food insecure groups and a food secure group. The positions are differentiated by the length of time a household went without sufficient food. Characteristics of operating under seasonal lease, being a food secure household, and households farming medium quality soil increase the probability of adopting soil improving practices. Application of chemical fertilizers, commercial seeds, and pesticides, along with operating under a seasonal lease tenure and adoption of improved soil practices are likely to improve the household food security position. Households with medium quality soil have a larger probability of not being a chronic food insecure household. Given the high priority that the government of Ghana has placed on food security, policies that encourage households to adopt soil improving practices may be beneficial to food insecure households. Household characteristics such as income, age, education level, and household size are not significant in determining the likelihood of a household being in one of food insecurity group. The insignificance may be attributed to the homogeneity of the surveyed household characteristics.
Nata, Jifar T (2013). Household Segmentation in Food Insecurity and Soil Improving Practices in Ghana. Master's thesis, Texas A & M University. Available electronically from