Determinants of input use on smallholder farms in the former Lebowa

24 Apr 2007

This paper presents evidence from the former Lebowa to evaluate the impact of liquidity, input supply and distribution infrastructure, extension and training services on the quantities of inputs purchased and used by individual small farm-households. Secondly, it assesses the impact of various inputs used on smallholder farm productivity. The results from this study reveal that the key determinants of the main inputs purchased and used by smallholder farmers in the former Lebowa namely fertilizer, seed and other inputs (chemicals, veterinary services and feeds) are credit, non-farm incomes, extension services and location. Productivity is in turn determined by the application of fertilizer, use of other inputs, training and location. It concludes that farmers with access to credit, incomes and training and located in districts with higher potential natural resources, use more inputs and produce more than their counterparts without access and located in poor agro-ecological zones.