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Fule, Chi Bemieh, 2013. Small-scale versus large-scale cocoa farming in Cameroon : which farm type is more ready for the future?. Second cycle, A2E. Uppsala: SLU, Dept. of Economics

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Abstract

Smallholding in the cocoa sector has been seen as a hindrance to production and productivity growth due to the ageing of the cocoa farmers, limited access to credit, low level of education and low adoptability of innovations. In order to curb this, policy makers have resorted to implementing policy instruments that encourage the extension of small rural farms into larger farms, thereby undermining the challenges that large-scale farmers might have to deal with.

This study was aimed at measuring the relative economic performances of small-scale and large-scale cocoa farmers. Constrained by the on-going policy debates and the nature of the data, the criteria used for comparison were land productivity, cost of production, marketing strategies and profitability; as well as the factors affecting them. The analysis was based on primary cross-sectional data obtained from cocoa farmers in the Nyong and Mfoumou Division of the Centre Region of Cameroon.

Results reveal that smallholders have higher yield and higher profit margins than large-holders, but that they are less efficient in marketing their produce, and that they incur equal costs on average. Smallholders and large-scale farmers were also observed to have similar socio-economic characteristics except for their household sizes; that is, smallholders have small families of 5 persons as opposed to 11 persons for large-scale farms. The most prominent socioeconomic factors determining farmer’s economic performance include household size and experience in cocoa farming. The most common marketing strategy adopted predominantly by large-scale farmers was group selling, hence no statistical difference between their selling prices.

Therefore operating large cocoa farms is neither an efficient nor a sustainable method of raising cocoa production and family income. However the co-existence of both farmer categories is encouraged. Thus the study proposes that policy debates should address issues like the optimal size of a cocoa farm in Cameroon and the effective farming system required to achieve higher efficiency and sustainability of cocoa farms.

Main title:Small-scale versus large-scale cocoa farming in Cameroon
Subtitle:which farm type is more ready for the future?
Authors:Fule, Chi Bemieh
Supervisor:Hess, Sebastian and Gaspart, Frederik
Examiner:Gren, Ing-Marie
Series:Examensarbete / SLU, Institutionen för ekonomi
Volume/Sequential designation:829
Year of Publication:2013
Level and depth descriptor:Second cycle, A2E
Student's programme affiliation:Other
Department:(NL, NJ) > Dept. of Economics
Keywords:Cameroon, cocoa, large-scale farming, small-scale farming
URN:NBN:urn:nbn:se:slu:epsilon-s-3053
Permanent URL:
http://urn.kb.se/resolve?urn=urn:nbn:se:slu:epsilon-s-3053
Subjects:Economics and management
Language:English
Deposited On:25 Feb 2014 15:17
Metadata Last Modified:25 Feb 2014 15:17

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