Institutional Change and Discontinuities in Farmers' Use of Hybrid Maize Seed and Fertilizer in Malawi: Findings from the 1996-97 CIMMYT/ MoALD Survey
AbstractThis study records the use of hybrid maize seed and fertilizer by small-scale farmers in Malawi, as well as their opinions about these inputs, from 1989-90 through 1996-97. Its main purpose is to determine whether the principal constraint to smallholders� use of maize hybrids is the acceptability of the hybrid maize germplasm or the institutional reforms and policies affecting its use. The study also provides information about a practice that has implications for the impact of seed technologies and seed industries � the recycling of nonconventional hybrids (i.e., saving seed of an F1 hybrid to plant in subsequent seasons). Findings of the most recent farmer survey in 1996-97 demonstrate that the grain quality or yield characteristics of maize hybrids no longer constrain smallholders� use of F1 hybrid seed. Farmers stated almost unanimously that they wanted to grow F1 hybrid seed, but most could not purchase as much seed as they wished. A large number of farmers recycle hybrid seed, which is not surprising, given the early stages of diffusion of hybrid maize in Malawi, the start-stop nature of policies affecting input use, and free seed distributed by the government and NGOs. It may be worthwhile for researchers to investigate prospects for producing hybrids whose characteristics resist deterioration from recycling. Aside from this plant breeding issue, pressing concerns of national maize production, food security, and the welfare of smallholders remain to be addressed. Farmers with the resources to use credit, purchase inputs, grow cash crops, or produce maize surpluses represent a smaller and smaller percentage of farmers. It is doubtful whether complete reliance on private initiatives can transform the smallholder maize sector in a country that relies on agriculture as much as Malawi, but where infrastructure is inadequate, nonfarm employment opportunities are few, and incentives are insufficient to mobilize trade and generate cash in rural areas.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by CIMMYT: International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center in its series Economics Working Papers with number 7674.
Date of creation: 1998
Date of revision:
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Jappelli, Tullio, 1990. "Who Is Credit Constrained in the U.S. Economy?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 105(1), pages 219-34, February.
- Kydd, Jonathan & Christiansen, Robert, 1982. "Structural change in Malawi since independence: Consequences of a development strategy based on large-scale agriculture," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 10(5), pages 355-375, May.
- Zeller, Manfred & Ahmed, Akhter U. & Babu, Suresh Chandra & Broca, Sumiter S. & Diagne, Aliou & Sharma, Manohar, 1996. "Rural finance policies for food security of the poor," FCND discussion papers 11, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
- Smale, Melinda & Heisey, Paul W & Leathers, Howard D, 1995. "Maize of the Ancestors and Modern Varieties: The Microeconomics of High-Yielding Variety Adoption in Malawi," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 43(2), pages 351-68, January.
- Simtowe, Franklin & Zeller, Manfred & Diagne, Aliou, 2009.
"The Impact of credit constraints on the adoption of hybrid maize in Malawi,"
2009 Conference, August 16-22, 2009, Beijing, China
51627, International Association of Agricultural Economists.
- Franklin Simtowe & Manfred Zeller & Aliou Diagne, 2009. "The impact of credit constraints on the adoption of hybrid maize in Malawi," Review of Agricultural and Environmental Studies - Revue d'Etudes en Agriculture et Environnement, INRA Department of Economics, vol. 90(1), pages 5-22.
- Morris, Michael L. & Risopoulos, Jean & Beck, David, 1999. "Genetic Change in Farmer-Recycled Maize Seed: A Review of the Evidence," Economics Working Papers 7683, CIMMYT: International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center.
- Diagne, Aliou & Zeller, Manfred, 2001. "Access to credit and its impact on welfare in Malawi:," Research reports 116, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (AgEcon Search).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.