Migrant farmers and agricultural development in the West Gonja District: a socio-economic study

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Many African countries are faced with the problem of increasing food production order to attain food self sufficiency. Ghana is no exception. It still relies on the importation of food to satisfy domestic demand. The small scale agricultural sector, the highest contributor to food production is influenced by demographic patters and intra-rural migration, which in turn are related to relative return to agricultural investment. Surplus and underemployed labour is often attracted to areas with a high potential for unattractive suffer from net outflow of population. Factors such as population pressure reducing farm sizes, and the low returns to land have caused the migration of people from the northeastern and northwestern part of the country southwards to undertake farming activities. These migrant farmers play a major role in the production of both food and cash crops. However, certain problem such as inadequate supply of farm inputs, lack of production credit, poor marketing/storage facilities, poor weather conditions, lack of adequate extension services and declining soil fertility, according to this study are the major factors hindering the productivity of such farmers. The study has proposed some measures that would help raise productivity of migrant farmers as well as local farmers. If these measures are vigorously pursued, not only will the productivity of farmers be raise, but also their income levels. This could lead to the development of the district at large.
A thesis submitted to the Board of Postgraduate Studies, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi, in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the award of the Degree of Master of Science in Development Planning and Management, 1990