LEVELS OF FARMERS’ ADOPTION OF INNOVATIONS PROVIDED BY UNIFIED AGRICULTURAL EXTENSION SERVICES (UAES) FOR SUSTAINABLE AGRICULTURAL DEVELOPMENT IN IMO STATE, NIGERIA
The study focused on levels of farmers’ adoption of innovations provided by Unified Agricultural Extension Services (UAES) in Imo State, Nigeria. The specific objectives were to determine the adoption level of farmers on crop combination technology, livestock, fishery, agro-forestry and women in agriculture technology. Five research questions guided the study. The study adopted survey design and was conducted in Imo State. The population of the study was 22,988 comprising 22,880 farmers and 108 extension agents in the study area. Total samples of 336 were used consisting of 226 contact farmers and 108 extension agents. The instrument for data collection was Structured Questionnaire complemented by the Focused Group Discussion (FGD) guide. The questionnaire comprised 45-items arranged in clusters and the internal consistency of the instrument was established using Cronbach alpha method which yielded the reliability coefficients of 0.70. The data were analysed using mean statistics; Information collected from the focused group discussion was qualitatively analysed. The findings of the study revealed that adoption of technologies provided by UAES and adopted by farmers was not satisfactory in all the technologies promoted in the various components such as crop combination technology, livestock, fishery, agro-forestry and women in agriculture. Based on the findings of the study, conclusions were drawn and recommendations made which include, among others, the provision of infrastructure, inputs, credit facilities that will improve adoption and utilisation of innovation for sustainable agricultural development in Imo State.
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