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THE EFFECTS OF FORMAL EDUCATION AND COOPERATIVE MEMBERSHIP ON THE FARM SIZE CULTIVATED BY FAMERS IN ABUJA, NIGERIA
The study examined the effects of formal education and cooperative membership on the farm size cultivated by farmers in Abuja, Nigeria. The study population comprised cooperative and non-cooperative farmers who had no formal school education and those who had primary school education, secondary school education and post secondary school education. To reach these 8 farmer-categories (FAG), a purposive technique was adopted for sample selection while semi-structured questionnaires were used for data collection. A sample of 240 respondents made up of 30 farmers from each of the categories was used for the study. A two-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) was used for data analysis.
Results indicated that irrespective of farmers’ educational status, there was significant difference (p < 0.05) in the farm size of the cooperative and non-cooperative farmers. The mean farm size indicated that cooperative farmers cultivated lager farm size (2.24ha) than non-cooperative farmers (1.96ha). Similarly, irrespective of cooperative membership, there was no significant (p > 0.05) effect of farmers’ educational status on the farm size but the mean farm size for farmers who had post secondary school education (2.41ha) was relatively higher compared with others. Furthermore, there was no significant (p > 0.05) interaction effect of cooperative membership and education on the size of land cultivated. Based on the result of the interaction of cooperative membership and farmers’ educational status, the paper concluded that the educational status of a cooperative or non-cooperative farmer was not a major determinant of the farm size cultivated in the study area.
Keywords: cooperative farmers, non-cooperative farmers, no formal school, primary school, secondary school, post secondary school