1999C"- inference NMI P r Oc*edin gs~
15th Annual Conference
-21, 22, 23, 24 March, 1999,, 25, 26,rMa6ich;,, 1999 ioba c4,
Association- fotir Inter ''a
Agricultural and Ex-te nsi qikEd ti i
A professional association committed to strengthening ~agiculturailand Extension: education programs and institutions iiontesaudthwrl
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A Description of a Small Scale Farm Systems in Lower Casamance, Senegal: The Initial Programming Step
Agricultural Education and Communication University of Florida
P.O. Box 110540
Gainesville, FL 32611-0504 Phone: (352) 392-0502
Fax: (352) 392-9585
Former Graduate Student Farming Systems Research and Extension Specialization Department of Agricultural Education and Communication University of Florida
Professdr s n
Food and Resource Economics University of Florid .
The purpose of this study was to provide diagnostic programming information for extension stakeholders in the lower Casamance, Senegal. The village of Loudia Ouloff was purposefully selected as being a representative village in one of the five agricultural zones in the region. Selected data for this socio-economic analysis of small, limited resource farms were collected from the 1984 agro-socioeconomic survey (SAIR,1984). Verification and supplemental data were collected by one of the researchers during the summer of 1996. Linear programming was used to conceptualize and to model the nature and complexity of the small farm systems. The average size of the work force by household was five. The family, constituted the main source of labor for all activities. By maximizing cash income after satisfying consumption requirements, palm oil and fruit saies netted the family 92,945 francs CFA ($265). Based upon the 'aVailability of raw materials and a stable market price (500 francs CFA), a basket making enterprise holds promise as a scenario for boosting family ippome. Basket making is a female activity that generally happens during the
The west African country of Senegal has an agricultural economy. In 1980, agriculture accounted for 28% of the gross national product and provided employment for 80% of the economically active population. In recent years, cereal production in Senegal has not been sufficient to meet consumption needs and most of the production was generated by the small holders which represent 60 to 70% of the farming population. The general crisis in Senegalese agriculture during the last two decades and in Lower Casamance in particular derives from an insufficient adaptation of traditional farming systems to agroclimatic changes (decreased rainfall, shortening of seasons, degradation of the edaphic milieu) and an evolution of the socioeconomic environment (population growth, government policies, trade conditions, development of social dynamics). This unfavorable agro-socioeconomic context negatively influenced the production strategies of small-scale farms and family livelihood systems.
It has'been recognized and accepted by the government aId
development agencies that agricultural and social changes in the production systems of these farms, based on the utilization of new or modified technologies, is an important strategy and a challenge for the agricultural, economic and social development of the country.
According to Merrell-Sands (1986), Farming Systems Research and Extension (FSR&E) is characterized as being farmer-centered and systemsoriented. Interdisciplinary teams consisting of applied social scientists and biological.scientists, draw upon a broad base of existing knowledge in the problem-solving process. These teams communicate continuously with village-level households as they conduct on-farm research in an effort to provide solutions to complex village-based problems. The Steps of FSR&E involve diagnosis, design, testing and dissemination. (Hildebrand &Russell, 1996).
The diagnosis of a need has been defined as the difference between a' current condition and the condition that is desired (Boyle, 1981). According to Bennett and Rockwell (1995), such conditions generally occur within a social, economic, or environmental domain. Due to limited resources in developing countries, the economic domain is crucial in the village-level development process. In Senegal, a fifteen-year drought has contributed to food shortages in the lower Casamance (southern region) of -the country. The over-riding concern of small-scale, limited resource farmersin the area is to sustain family rather than to produce agricultural products for export (Lo, 1997).
The Lower Casamance covers an area of 7,300 km2 in southern-,.
Senegal from the Soungrougrou Valley to the Atlantic Coast. The region's subguinean climate receives a strong maritime wind and is characterized by two seasons: a dry season from November to May and a rainy season from June to October, with August receiving the heaviest rainfall. The Atlantic Ocean has a dominant influence on the hydrology of the region because of its very low elevation and the current rainfall deficit. Salt water frequently flows as far as 220 km upstream from the mouth of the Casamance River. The region has an extensive network of lowland swamps which facilitate even further penetration of the sea water.
The Lower Casamance is essentially an agricultural region and plays an important role in Senegal's agricultural development policy. Groundnuts, rice, millet/sorghum and crops are grown in the region. Different types of livestock are found in the Lower Casamance, such as N'dama cattle and Guinean species of sheep, goats and pigs. However, very few donkeys and horses exist in the region. During the last ten years the mean rainfall has averaged from 1,000mm to 1,1 00mm in Ziguinchor (compared to the normal 1,500mm). This average, however does not reflect significant inter-annual variations. Each of the three districts in the Lower Casamance has suffered several years of drought over the past ten-year period, so severe as to place the agricultural system at risk. As a result of the drought, there has been a decrease in the total area cultivated, consequently the production of cereal crops has decreased.'
The purpose of this study was to provide diagnostic information for extension stakeholders in the lower Casamance, Senegal. The specific objectives of this study were to: (1) identify the characteristics of a representative community and household; (2) develop an economic model of a representative household, and to (3) determine the influence of an alternative scenario to increase the family income of a representative household.
Methods and Materials
This study was a part of a broader study that used linear programming
(LP) to conceptualize and model the nature and complexity of the small farm system. Due to a great deal of heterogeneity in social organization (division of labor within a household) and agricultural production (upland vs. lowland crops and the use of animal traction), aFarming Systems Research and Extension (FSR&E) team from the Senegalese Institute of Agricultural Research (SIAR), divided the lower Casamance into five agricultural zones. The village of Loudia Ouloff was purposefully selected for this study as being a representative Village for one of the five agricultural zones in the region. Selected data for this socio-economic analysis of small, limited resource
farms were collected from the 1984 agro-socioeconomic survey (SAIR,1984). Verification and supplemental data were collected by one of the researchers during the summer of 1996.
LP allows one to predict the response of family livelihood systems to improved technologies, providing valuable feedback to researchers, policy makers, local organizations (public and private) and technology change agents. Linear programming used sets of linear equations in an optimization procedure that allocated scarce resources among competing alternatives to maximize specified objectives. The standard form of a LP model is composed of three sections: (1) an objective function, (2) resource constraints, and (3) activities or competing alternatives. According to Timmer, Falcon, and Pearson (1983), linear programming solutions are beneficial in understanding changes in a farming systems environment. Data were analyzed using the Quattro-Pro 6.0 software program.
Loudia Ouloff, a village located south of the River Casamance,
represented a traditional Diola system. The traditional Diola live in households (butong) composed of conjugal units with autonomy in economic matters. Villages were organized in groups of individual residential units (eluf). Households followed an intensive aquatic rice production system with a marked division of labor by task. The heavy work of dike building and ridging was performed by men. Land was nominally owned by patrifilial groups, but usufruct rights to land were assigned With the conjugal Unit under the direct responsibility of the head of the compound.-IWomen, as a rule did not own land. The village of Loudia Ouloff had a population of 306 people with 43 households. The average size of the work force by household/farm was five. The village had 172 hectares of community land.
The representative household was comprised of nine people (three
men, four women, and two children). The average size of the work force by household/farm was five. The family constituted the main source of labor for all activities. During the peak periods (plowing, transplanting, and harvesting), the household could hire a limited amount I labor if cash was available. Fuel, medicine and other family needs werc purchased from the market. The household activities included crop and livestock production, non-agricultural natural resource extractive activities, and domestic activities.
The average farm size consisted of two hectares of family land for
crop production, and three hectares of community land (Table 1). Crops that were produced included rice, groundnuts, maize, sweet potatoes, and cowpeas. The community.land provided fruit, firewood, .and palm oil, of which fruit and palm oil supplied the -main source of revenue to the family. Households followed an intensive, aquatic-rice production system, with an average yield of 854 kg/ha. ,All rice that wasproduced on the farm was
consumed within the household. In terms of livestock, the average farm had six sheep, six goats, a family herd of fifteen cattle and some chickens. The livestock were used for ceremonies and rituals and constituted the main source of manure for crop production. By maximizing cash income, using the linear programming model, after satisfying consumption requirements, palm oil and fruit sales netted the family 92,945 francs CFA ($265). The average farm household could produce 114 liters of palm oil, 242 kg of fruit, and was able to satisfy its consumption needs using the family and community land that was available. The farm household used 207 person-days of the family wet-season labor and 240 person-days (the maximum) of the family dry season labor.
Based upon the LP model, it was apparent that the average household had limited resources but earned substantial revenues from non-agronomic activities such as fruit production and palm oil collection. Increased production was limited due to the lack of land. Labor also constituted a* constraint to increased production of palm oil during the dry season. Based upon the availability of raw materials and a stable market price (500 francs CFA), a basket making enterprise held promise as a scenario for boosting family income. Basket making was a female activity that generally happened.
Description of a Representative Household
- Family farm'size (ha)' 2
- Community land (ha) 3
- Family labor (person-day/ha) 700
- Cash available (francs CFA) 6000
- Seeds groundnut (kg) 40
- Seeds maize (kg) 20
- Seeds aquatic rice (kg) 100
- Seeds cowpea (kg) 12
- Seeds sweet potatoes (cuttings) 100
Labor for the different activities (person days/ha)
-Aquatic rice 144
-Sweet potatoes 8
-Palm oil 158
-Fruit, production 15
Family consumption needs (kg/year)
- Maize 500
- Aquatic rice 602
- Cowpea 30
- Sweet potatoes 46
- Palm oil (liters) 50
- Fruit production 84
Seeds for different crops (kg/ha)
- Groundnuts 60
- Maize 15
- Aquatic rice. 120
- Cowpea 10
- Sweet potatoes (cuttings) 10000
Yields of crops (kg/ha)
- Groundnuts 608
- Maize 554
- Aquatic rice 854
- Cowpea .122
- Sweet potatoes 4600
- Palm oil (liters) 120
- Fruit production 200
during the dry season. The linear programming model showed that femalelabor during this season was binding. However, male dry season labor was not a ,constraint. To be successful in this enterprise, the household would need to hire labor to collect raw-material aid make baskets. Th'u_,young -9 village males could be employed in this basket making alternative.'. The :, acceptability of this innovation depends mainly on the availability of cash which can easily be obtained from the revenues of palm oil and fruit Production. The result shows that by hiring labor (50 person days) at the rate of 250 francs CFA ($0.71) per person, the farm can produce 133 baskets, 252.96 kg of fruit, 107.83 liters of palm oil and easily satisfy the family consumption needs. Participation in this enterprise would add 66,500 francs CFA ($190) to the household income, which would increase the total family income to 143,915 francs CFA ($412).
This study of small-scale farmers in the village of Loudia Ouloff has important implications for future extension programming activities. The community and household characteristics and the economic model of a representative household provide important baseline information on Loudia Ouloff's current situation. Broad economic program goals can now be developed and related programs implemented. As per the alternative scenario"examined in this study, a pilot program should be implemented to confirm it's anticipated success.
Boyle, P. G. (1981). Planning better programs. New York: McgrawHill.
Bennett, C., & and Rockwell, K. (1995). Targeting outcomes of programs (TOP) : an integrated approach to planning and evaluation.
Hildebrand, P. E. & Russell, J. (1996). Adaptability analysis: A
method for design, analysis and interpretation of on-farm research-extension.
IA: Iowa State University Press.
Institut Senegalais de Recheres Agricoles. (The Senegalese Institute of Agricultural Research). (1984), La rechere sur les systemes de production en Basse Casamance. (The research of production systems in the lower Casamance (region)). Dakar: Department de Reserche sur les Systemes de Production et le Transfert de Technologies en Miliieu. (Department of Research on Production Systems and Technology Transfer in Milieu).
Lo, M. A comparison of on-farm research and extension methods in small scale farm systems in Lower Casamance, Senegal. Unpublished master's thesis, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL.
Merrell-Sands, D. (1986). Farming systems research: clarification of the terms and concepts. Experimental Science. 22: 87-104.
Timmer, C. P., Falcon, W. P., & Pearson, S. R. (1983). Food policy analysis. Baltimore, Md: The Johns Hopkins University Press.