UMAR MUKHTAR1,2; ZAINALABIDIN MOHAMED1; MAD NASIR SHAMSUDDIN1; JUWAIDAH SHARIFUDDIN1; ABDULLAHI ILIYASU1
1 Universiti Putra Malaysia, Faculty of Agriculture, Department of Agribusiness and Bioresource Economics, 43400 UPM Serdang, Selangor Darul Ehsan, Malaysia
2 Federal University Dutse, Department of Agricultural Economics and Extension, Faculty of Agriculture, P.M.B. 7156, Jigawa State-Nigeria
Mukhtar, U., Z. Mohamed, M. N. Shamsuddin, J. Sharifuddin and A. Iliyasu, 2018. Application of data envelopment analysis for technical efficiency of smallholder pearl millet farmers in Kano State, Nigeria, Bulg. J. Agric. Sci., 24 (2): 213–222
In northern Nigeria, pearl millet is a traditional crop, both in terms of production and consumption. However, performance of pearl millet among smallholder farmers has either stagnated or progressed at a very slow pace, placing the average yield for this vital crop at 1-1.5 t/ha as against the potential yields of 2.5-4 t/ha. Low productivity reflects the possibility of inefficiency among farmers. Thus, evaluating differences in technical efficiencies (TEs) of pearl millet cultivating farmers and the sources of technical inefficiencies, the findings of this study are expected to be beneficial to policy makers and pearl millet farmers as well. Using Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA) and Ordinary Least Square (OLS) model, this study aims to investigate the extent of TE and its determinants of 256 randomly selected pearl millet farmers in Kano state, during 2013/2014 period of crop cultivation. Based on input-oriented and VRS, the empirical result indicated that the average value of TE was found to be 81%. This implies that pearl millet farmers operate at 81% level of TE which means total inputs could be saved by 19% without sacrificing any yield if all farmers were efficient as 62 benchmark farmers identified by DEA. The major slacks were in seed, followed by agrochemicals, labour and fertilizer use. The findings relating to return-to-scale in pearl millet farms in the study area showed that the predominant form of scale efficiency is increasing returns-to-scale (69.14%). The result of OLS regression analysis indicates that age of farmers, credit, education, experience; farm size, household size and type of seed planted have a significant and positive effect on the TE of pearl millet production.