Factors influencing the adoption of organic farming practices in the banana cropping systems in Kajara County, Ntungamo district
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This study was carried out in Kajara County, Ntungamo District aimed at identifying and characterising the existing organic farming practices used by smallholder farmers; establishing the socio-economic and institutional factors influencing adoption of organic farming practices in the banana cropping system. To achieve the above objectives systematic and purposive sampling the study adopted a cross sectional research design whereby data was collected from 357 farmers through household surveys using questionnaires, and key informant interviews. Quantitative data was analysed with the help of SPSS, whereby descriptive statistics such as frequencies and percentages were determined, chi-square tests were run to examine whether there were significant differences between adopters and non-adopters in relation to the adoption of organic farming practices. Study findings show that, mulching was highly organic farming practice employed followed by weed management, use of farmyard manure, pest management, use of crop residues and use of cover crops as the least utilised practice; chi-square test results revealed that there were significant differences between adopters and non-adopters with regard to, age of the household head, gender , household size, years of farming experience, ownership of land, off-farm income, number of extension contacts, membership to farmer groups and access to credit significantly influenced the use of organic farming practices. On the other hand, there were no significant differences between adopters and non-adopters of organic farming practices concerning the education level and marital status thus did not influence the rate of adoption. Therefore, this study recommends interventions that enhance farmers’ awareness through agricultural advisory services with a focus on organic farming practices, increased access to credit facilities, and secure land tenure.