Profitability, labour input, fertilizer application and crop protection in vegetable production in the Arusha region, Tanzania

A.P. Everaarts, H. de Putter, A.P. Maerere

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademic

Abstract

An analysis was made of the inputs, costs and profit of vegetable production in Arusha region,
Tanzania. The aim was to establish the financial capability of vegetable producers to invest in
improved production techniques use of hybrid seeds and drip irrigation. The average income
from vegetable production was 17,362 Tanzanian Shilling per hectare per growing day
(TZS/ha/Gday). This amount is equivalent to around 7,500 TZS (4.73 USD) per day for 0.53 ha,
which is the average area of vegetable production in the study area. After deduction of
estimated daily expenses of a five-member household, the remaining earnings would only make
a gradual introduction of hybrid seeds and drip irrigation possible. Farmers have complained of
lack of access to affordable credit. Thus companies supplying hybrid seeds and improved
vegetable production equipment would do wise to offer safe and affordable credit. Profit per
crop was primarily influenced by labour input and to a lower extent by yield level and product
price. Average labour input per crop ranged from 3 to 13 h/ha/Gday. The average for all crops
was 6.4 h/ha/Gday. About 89% of labour spend, was hired labour, constituting 54% of the
average total production costs. Average cost of fertilizer application and crop protection were
18% and 6% respectively, of total production costs. Farmers complained about high costs of
inorganic fertilizers, which may be the reason for low amounts applied. Most of the active
ingredients of fungicides applied are of the mancozeb type, while insecticides belong to the
organochlorines and organophosphates. Herbicide use was low, limited to carrot production
only.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5181-5202
JournalJournal of Animal and Plant Sciences
Volume32
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2017

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