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Accueil du site → Doctorat → Afrique du Sud → 2017 → Critical analysis of the contribution of smallholder dairy farming to the livelihoods of households : The case of Nharira, Zimbabwe

University of Venda (2017)

Critical analysis of the contribution of smallholder dairy farming to the livelihoods of households : The case of Nharira, Zimbabwe

Kabiti, Hlekani Muchazotida

Titre : Critical analysis of the contribution of smallholder dairy farming to the livelihoods of households : The case of Nharira, Zimbabwe

Auteur : Kabiti, Hlekani Muchazotida

Université de soutenance : University of Venda

Grade : Doctor of Philosophy in Rural Development (PHDRDV) 2017

Résumé partiel
As has been the case in Eastern and Southern Africa, Zimbabwe continues to regard smallholder dairy farming as a viable strategy for reducing poverty and malnutrition, especially in rural areas. Although the country has since the early 1980s been promoting smallholder dairy development, available literature does not provide a clear picture of the extent to which the specific livelihoods of rural communities in terms of human, social, physical and financial capitals, have improved. Nor is there knowledge on its negative contribution to the farmers’ livelihoods. Thus, this study was undertaken to critically analyse the contribution of smallholder dairy farming towards the livelihoods of rural households using the Nharira dairy scheme as a focal area. The DfiD sustainable livelihood framework was used to build this understanding. Apart from characterizing the farmers, the contribution of smallholder dairy farming towards social, physical, human, natural and financial capitals was investigated. A sequentially integrated mixed methods approach was used. This was divided into two phases, which were quantitative and qualitative in nature. Results from the first phase were used to inform and design the second study. A census of the 21 active smallholder dairy farmers in Nharira, and management committee of the Nharira dairy processing plant was conducted. A household-focused questionnaire, key informant interviews, participatory mapping, record review, Global Positioning System (GPS) locating and focus group discussions were used to collect data. A tape recorder, GPS locator and camera were used as assistive devices during data collection. Thematic content analysis was used to analyse qualitative data and interpret participatory maps. Livelihood capital indices were derived per household and used to complement descriptive statistics as part of quantitative data analysis. A social capital index was computed for each household using collective action, empowerment, groups and networks, and trust and solidarity as its components. Resource stocks and access were the building blocks of the natural capital index. Income, savings and investments, and access to funding were used to derive the household financial capital index. Contribution of dairy farming to productive equipment (such as cattle herd size) and basic infrastructure (such as quality of housing) were used to calculate the physical capital index. The index for human capital was obtained taking into account education, workforce and employment, enabling environment, and health and wellness. Equal weights were applied to the components when deriving the household livelihood indices because each one of them was considered to be substantially important for sustainable livelihoods. The quantitative data were stored and analysed using the International Business Machines (IBM) Statistical iii Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) version 24. Pearson correlation coefficients, means and standard deviations were calculated. Most of the farmers (65 %) were female. Approximately, 95 % of the women farmers were literate. Only 1 % of the farmers were youth (< 35 years old), a situation that threatened the sustainability of smallholder dairy farming. A daily smallholder dairy farming routine was derived using the focus group and participatory mapping results. This showcased the various daily activities and linked them with the household members actively involved. Smallholder dairy farming was found to be labour intensive. This might deter the farmers from diversifying into other livelihood strategies. Smallholder dairy farming was observed to have strengthened financial, human, natural, physical and social capitals in the local households. However, the respective indices of 0.59 and 0.52 for social and natural capitals, suggested that smallholder dairy farming impacted on these more than any other. Even though social capital was strong, further reinforcement through improved smallholder dairy farming activities was still vital because of its power of enhancing access to other forms of livelihood capitals. Human and physical capitals had the least index scores of 0.48 and 0.47, respectively.

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