, Volume 38, Issue 3, pp 223-234

Free-range village chickens on the Accra Plains, Ghana: Their contribution to households

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Abstract

A cross-sectional survey investigating the contribution of free-range village chickens to household economies was carried out in four administrative districts within 60km of Accra. Answers were provided by 101 men and 99 women. Nearly all respondents claimed to keep chickens for meat, with a far smaller percentage claiming to keep them for egg production. Over 80% of respondents kept chickens to supplement their incomes. The proportion of the flock eaten varied between administrative areas (p=0.009 and p=0.027), although this was possibly a consequence of differences in consumption patterns between occupation of the respondent, land area cultivated and flock size. The proportion of chickens sold varied as a result of differences in flock size (p=0.013), the proportion sold increasing with number of birds in the flock. Respondents generally agreed that chickens could be sold without difficulty. A majority of chicken sales were from the farm gate, directly to consumers or traders. Sales were on demand or when the owner needed money. Money from the sale was kept by the owner of the chicken and the money was spent on personal needs. The proportion of the flock sold varied between administrative areas (p=0.025) and occupation of the respondent (p=0.040). Respondents describing animal production as their main occupation tended to have greater reliance on chicken sales for their income. Consideration is given to estimating the offtake from the flock and the financial contribution to the household.