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DETERMINANTS OF YOUTHS’ PARTICIPATION IN AGRIBUSINESS ACTIVITIES IN IMO STATE, NIGERIA
The study examined factors that influenced youths’ participation in agribusiness activities in Imo State, Nigeria. A sample of 300 youths, selected using a multistage sampling procedure participated in the study. Data were collected using a structured interview schedule and the variables were analyzed using percentage and mean score. The hypothesis was tested using a multiple regression model. Results showed that the majority (76.3%) of the youths were married, received an average of secondary school education and have spent an average of 11 years in agribusiness. Crop farming (ܺത = 4.1), livestock farming (ܺത = 3.5) and sale of produce (ܺത = 3.7) were the major agribusiness activities undertaken by the youths. The result further showed that the youths participated in an average of three agribusiness ventures. The major challenges to participation in agribusiness included access to information and knowledge (ܺത = 3.7), access to ICT (ܺത = 3.1) and markets availability (ܺത = 3.1). The multiple regression results showed that at p ≤ 0.05 and an F-value of 102.8, the socioeconomic characteristics of the farmers accounted for 76% of the variations in the youth’s participation in agribusiness activities. The significant variables included age (t = – 3.4), household size (t = 2.5), educational qualification (t = 4.0), access to fund (t = 3.6) and income (t = 3.1). It was recommended that extension and advisory services should be improved to improve the dissemination of agricultural information.
Keywords: Determinants, youths’ participation, agribusiness activities, challenges.