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The role of variety attributes in the uptake of new hybrid bananas among smallholder rural farmers in central Uganda

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Abstract

Background: While advances in agricultural research and development have led to generation of improved new cooking hybrid banana varieties (HBVs) with enhanced yield potential to restore production levels, these have been received with mixed feelings on production and consumption attributes among the farming communities in Uganda. Some farmers prefer HBVs that are comparable to their local varieties in terms of consumption attributes such as soft food, color when cooked, flavor and taste while others prefer high-yielding HBVs to produce surplus output for sale. Methods: Using cross-sectional survey data from 242 randomly selected smallholder banana farmers in Nakaseke and Luwero districts in Central Uganda, the study applied a Tobit regression model to analyze the influence of socio-economic factors and variety attributes on the adoption of new hybrid bananas. Results: The results on the perception of farmers on banana variety attributes showed that the new HBVs had desirable production-related attributes, while local cultivars were rated superior to hybrids on consumption-related attributes. Evidence further showed that production-related and consumption-related attributes influenced farmers' decisions in the adoption of HBVs. Further, an assessment of the socio-economic factors that influence the adoption of HBVs showed that education of the farmer, household size, interaction with different banana actors, experience (number of years growing HBVs), and source of planting materials had a significant influence on farmers' adoption of the new HBVs. Conclusion: The study findings provide insights into the need for agricultural research and development initiatives to target the development of banana varieties with multi-traits that meet end-users' preferences and needs. Facilitating the establishment of multi-actor platforms that bring together the different actors to share information and learn might be useful in increasing the intensity of HBVs adoption.

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Sanya, L. N., Sanya, L. N., Sseguya, H., Kyazze, F. B., Diiro, G. M., & Nakazi, F. (2020). The role of variety attributes in the uptake of new hybrid bananas among smallholder rural farmers in central Uganda. Agriculture and Food Security, 9(1). https://doi.org/10.1186/s40066-020-00257-7

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