Agricultural Market Performance and Determinants of Fertilizer Use in Ethiopia
This paper examines how the fertilizer sector in general, and farmers’ demand for fertilizer in particular, has evolved since the introduction of fertilizer sector reforms in Ethiopia. There is much debate in the agricultural development literature about whether fertilizer use in Africa is constrained primarily by poor input distribution systems, by farmers’ lack of knowledge concerning the benefits and correct use of fertilizer, or by lack of effective demand because the product is simply not profitable enough. This paper looks at each of these issues in an effort to understand the relative importance of the different constraints and how well current policies are addressing the problems. It attempts to identify additional policy measures needed to sustain expanded use of fertilizer and thus enhance food security in Ethiopia.
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