Kemi F. Omotesho, Adeniyi F. Akinrinde, Ajoke O. Kayode and Deborah A. Olabode
University of Ilorin, Department of Agricultural Extension and Rural Development, PMB 1515 Ilorin, Nigeria
Omotesho, K F., Akinrinde, A. F., Kayode, A. O. & Olabode, D. A. (2021). An analysis of the capacity building needs of rice farmers in Kwara State, Nigeria. Bulg. J. Agric. Sci., 27 (2), 417–426
Farmers’ continuous use of inefficient methods of production, coupled with the wrong application of improved methods plays a significant role in the rice production deficit in Nigeria. This study assessed the use of improved farming practices among the rice farmers; identified the areas of training need; identified the constraints to the use of advanced methods; investigated the determinants of training needs; and examined the relationship between farmers’ training needs and their use of improved rice farming practices. A two-stage random sampling procedure was used to select 143 rice farmers on whom an interview schedule was administered. Data collected were analysed using descriptive statistics, Borich’s needs assessment model, Pearsons’ Product Moment Correlation, and the Multiple Regression Analysis. Results reveal that most of the respondents were males (92.3%), middle-aged (54years), and full-time rice farmers (62.2%). The level of use of improved farming practices among the farmers was high (MS=3.14). The most prominent areas of training need were; improved harvesting techniques, use of herbicides, row planting, optimum seed rate, flood control, land preparation, and levelling, planting depth, fertiliser rate, diseases control, and planting spacing. Inadequate extension contact (MS=3.30) was identified as the major constraints to the use of improved rice farming practices. At p<0.05, level of education (β=-4.373), frequency of extension contacts (β=-15.792), and membership of farmer-groups (β=-7.511) were the determinants of farmers’ training need. Furthermore, there was an inverse relationship between farmers’ training need and use of improved farming practices in rice production (r=-0.268, p<0.05). The study concluded by prioritising farmers’ areas of training need and recommends among others, that extension and agencies, as well as other bodies involved in training of farmers, focus on the identified areas of priority needs in rice production.