American Journal of Environmental Protection
ISSN (Print): 2328-7241 ISSN (Online): 2328-7233 Website: http://www.sciepub.com/journal/env Editor-in-chief: Mohsen Saeedi, Hyo Choi
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American Journal of Environmental Protection. 2017, 5(1), 13-19
DOI: 10.12691/env-5-1-3
Open AccessArticle

Diffusion of Orange Fleshed Sweet Potatoes by Smallholder Farmer Households in Petauke District; Zambia

Andrew Chilala1, and Gear M. Kajoba1

1Department of Geography and Environmental Studies, School of Natural Sciences, University of Zambia, Lusaka, Zambia

Pub. Date: June 02, 2017

Cite this paper:
Andrew Chilala and Gear M. Kajoba. Diffusion of Orange Fleshed Sweet Potatoes by Smallholder Farmer Households in Petauke District; Zambia. American Journal of Environmental Protection. 2017; 5(1):13-19. doi: 10.12691/env-5-1-3

Abstract

Since 2010/2011 farming season an innovation crop: Orange Fleshed Sweet Potato (OFSP) has been integrated in the farming system of the smallholder farmers of Eastern Province to help provide vitamin A to children below five years and pregnant women. The diffusion of the innovation was hierarchical and contagious and has improved household food security and livelihoods of the smallholder farmers in Petauke District. The methods used to collect data included simple random sampling, questionnaire, three Focus Group Discussions (FGDs) with smallholder farmers and a data sheet. Key informants were also interviewed. The analysis of qualitative data used the Statistical Pack for social scientists (SPSS) version 20. The sample size was 118 smallholder farmers. A total of 28 smallholder farmers out of the 107 that had received the information on the innovation representing 23.7% had adopted the innovation and remaining 76.3% had not adopted and were still in the decision stage. Between the 2011/2012 and 2013/2014, 91 out of 118: 77.1% had adopted. The other 8 households: 6.8% adopted the innovation in the 2012/2013 farming season while 19 representing 16.1% adopted the OFSP in the 2013/2014 farming season. The barriers and challenges to the diffusion included different types of capitals and generally lack of planting vines. The others included the perceived lack of market, sweet potatoes diseases, pests and livestock destroying the crop. The innovation crop met food security dimensions of availability, access, preference and utilization despite seasonality.

Keywords:
innovation diffusion innovation adoption smallholder farmers

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