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Takane, T. (2002). The Cocoa Farmers of Southern Ghana - Incentives, Institutions, and Change in Rural West Africa. Institute of Developing Economies - Japan External Trade Organization, Chiba, Japan.

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Article

Small Farmers and Market Economy: A Case Study of Dagomba in Northern Ghana

1Faculty of International Agriculture and Food Studies, Tokyo University of Agriculture, Tokyo, Japan

2College of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Michigan State University, East Lansing, USA


Journal of Food Security. 2017, Vol. 5 No. 4, 134-147
DOI: 10.12691/jfs-5-4-4
Copyright © 2017 Science and Education Publishing

Cite this paper:
Katsushige Nakasone, Murari Suvedi. Small Farmers and Market Economy: A Case Study of Dagomba in Northern Ghana. Journal of Food Security. 2017; 5(4):134-147. doi: 10.12691/jfs-5-4-4.

Correspondence to: Katsushige  Nakasone, Faculty of International Agriculture and Food Studies, Tokyo University of Agriculture, Tokyo, Japan. Email: katsu10@nodai.ac.jp

Abstract

Ghana is characterized by obvious economic disparities between northern and southern Ghana. In this paper, we analyze these disparities and economic growth by examining the current farming structure with reference to land use patterns and farming practices and linkages with the market economy. Using data collected through household surveys from 2004 to 2015 in the Dagomba area, gathered from five compounds of 12 to 14 farmers each, the study concludes that the position of agriculture as a source of income in rural areas has declined rapidly, indicating a potential de-agrarianization in rural Ghana. Nonetheless, in northern Ghana, which is resource-poor, agriculture is still seen as an important income source. Because of the unfavorable position of agriculture in the Ghanaian context, outmigration is occurring from rural to urban areas, especially by male family members, resulting in significant change in household composition (more elderly household heads). Changes in family composition and decreased farm sizes have an important implication for food security and livelihoods of Ghanaian families. All these adversities suggest the need to craft farming systems that encourage increased food production through the introduction of new production technology and crop diversification.

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