This project will explore farmers’ perceptions for open access grazing on private agricultural lands and their preferences for complementary policy incentives used as incentives to increase fodder productivity and subsequently adopt conservation agriculture.
Open access post-harvest grazing on private agricultural lands is a serious problem which affects the options of leaving residue in situ. Although open access in situ grazing is widespread, farmers are generally hesitant to adopt conservation agricultural practices that require the retention of crop residues as mulch, as this competes with their livestock feed needs and purchased feed is expensive. One effort to reduce open access grazing is through reinstating the traditional law that restricts a communal grazing access and simultaneously improving the productivity of forage crops which however causes improving livestock feed availability.
This project has the following objectives:
- to present insights on farm households’ perceptions of and demand for a change in traditional bylaws that restricts post-harvest grazing access on others’ farm plots;
- to determine factors inside and outside the community that could possibly affect willingness to accept or reject a new rule which stipulate that land owners could refuse others’ access to grazing on their property and they will not be allowed to graze their livestock on any privately owned land in the community;
- to examine the preferences of smallholder farmers with respect to reform on grazing rights, fertilizer and forage seed subsidies contracts used as incentives for them to adopt conservation practices and increase fodder productivity; and
- help to formulate alternative land use policies and strategies in improving conservation agriculture.
In order to address these objectives, we will build on the existing household survey data collected on randomly selected farm households in the Nile Basin of Ethiopia in 2015 and 2016. The data set involves cross-section of around 1000 households comprising both household and plot level data. We will use stated preference method to elicit farmers' preferences on policy incentives to adopt conservation agriculture and appropriate econometric tools to address each objective.