Assessing Perceptions Associated with Agrochemical Use on Food Production Among Smallholder Farmers in Kiboga District: a Case Study of Kibiga Sub-County
Author: ANNET TEDDY BIRUNGI
Supervisor: John Pius Masereka
The study was conducted to examine the perceptions associated with use of agrochemicals on food production in Kibiga Sub-County. The study was guided by the following objectives: to determine the farmers’ knowledge, attitudes and practices associated with usage of agrochemicals; to establish the level of food production in Kibiga Sub-County and to examine the impact of farmers ‘knowledge, attitudes and practices associated with agrochemicals on food production in Kibiga Sub-County. A case study research design was used. The study predominantly employed a quantitative approach but also used a qualitative approach. The study population consisted of 663 participants. A sample size of 248 respondents was selected using simple and purposive sampling techniques. It was established that all the respondents that took part in the study were mostly above the age of 30. The majority of respondents were between the ages of 40-49 (36.5%). For gender, the majority of the respondents were females (69.4%) and male (29.6%). These results show that gender representation indicated a bigger variation between the male and female with a difference of almost 50%. Academically, many of the respondents had primary school level of education (61.4%). In addition, it was established that (63%) of the respondents were married, 17.9% were single Quantitative data analysis mainly consisted of descriptive statistics (means and standard deviations) and inferential statistics (Spearman correlation and regression). Content analysis was used to analyze qualitative data. Findings revealed that the perceptions of farmers in Kibiga Sub-county were negatively affecting the usage of agrochemicals. It was found out that the level of food production in Kibiga Sub-county has been going down over years. This is because some households were reported to have hunger, their food taste has been declining and also the market is small. Lastly, it was established that farmers ‘knowledge, attitudes and practices associated with agrochemicals had a negative impact on food production Kibiga Sub-County. This was because farmers’ knowledge, attitudes and practices were reportedly negative towards agrochemicals use and this in the end affected food production. The recommendations were conducting research in areas such as IPM so as to improve food production, develop proper and effective information dissemination channels to ensure that farmers have adequate sources of technical information available on the safe use of the agrochemicals and Farmers should seek advice from agricultural stakeholders such as area agricultural officers.