Thesis Open Access
MELESE ASMARE WASSAI
Agriculture is a dominant sector of the Ethiopian economy and a lion share contributor to the gross domestic product, employment and foreign exchange earnings. The improvement of this sector promotes the livelihood of the vast population which mainly depends on farming. Extensive adoption of improved agricultural technologies such as improved seed varieties (in this case sorghum) plays vital role in reversing the present situation of prolonged food insecurity in many parts of Ethiopia. The main objective of this study was to identify factors that determine adoption of improved sorghum varieties and to identify the determinants of farmers’ choice of different sorghum varieties. The study used a primary data collected from 204 randomly selected sorghum producing farmers through structured interview schedule from four randomly selected Kebeles in Gondar Zuria District. Moreover, secondary data from regular statistical reports such as CSA, and other published and unpublished sources were reviewed. The data was analyzed through descriptive statistics and logit and multinomial probit econometric models. In the logit model, five variables were found to significantly affect adoption of improved sorghum varieties. These are credit (+), extension contact (+), off-farm income (+), farm size (+) and proportion of sorghum area (-). Thus what is needed from any development agents is that they should have to establish a credit scheme to support the farmers so that they can acquire improved sorghum variety and other inputs to boost production and productivity. Moreover extension contact between farmers and extension agents should be further strengthened, encourage farmers to participate in different extension programs regarding sorghum production improvement. Results of multinomial probit model revealed that age, credit, proportion of sorghum area, extension contact, farm size, off-farm income, irrigated land, and shortage of labor were variables that significantly explain the choice of sorghum varieties. Accordingly development and distribution of different sorghum varieties should be based up on the diverse socioeconomic and institutional characteristics that resides in the farming communities.