Contract farming and the adoption of climate change coping and adaptation strategies in the northern region of Ghana

Abstract

In climate change adaptation, contract farming can facilitate the adoption of coping and adaptation strategies, but such dynamics are less understood in the literature. This study uses primary data collected from a cross section of crop farmers in northern Ghana and a simultaneous equation systems approach to examine the links between contract farming and adoption of climate change coping and adaptation strategies. The major coping and adaptation strategies used by farmers include spraying of farms with chemicals, row planting, mixed farming, mixed cropping and crop rotation. Econometric results confirm that contract farming enhances the adoption of climate change adaptation strategies, but there is also a feedback effect on contract farming, such that farmers adopting more adaptation strategies have higher probabilities to get contract offer. This makes contract farming a viable policy instrument to consider in climate change adaptation. Furthermore, land ownership and extension services exert significant positive influence on adoption. As much as possible, coping and adaptation strategies should effectively be communicated to crop farmers. Policy-wise, development actors and successive governments in Ghana should encourage and facilitate contract or group farming, as was in the case of the National Block Farming, led by Ghana’s Ministry of Food and Agriculture.

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Acknowledgments

The study was supported financially by the GSSP of the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) through its Scholarship program for Master’s level research. We also honestly acknowledge our anonymous reviewers, whose comments have been very vital in reshaping the direction of this article.

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Correspondence to Isaac Gershon K. Ansah.

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Azumah, S.B., Donkoh, S.A. & Ansah, I.G.K. Contract farming and the adoption of climate change coping and adaptation strategies in the northern region of Ghana. Environ Dev Sustain 19, 2275–2295 (2017). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10668-016-9854-z

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Keywords

  • Contract farming
  • Climate change
  • Coping and adaptation strategies
  • Simultaneous equation systems
  • Northern Ghana