Economics of <i>Gnetum Africana</i> Production in Ukanafun Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom State, Nigeria
Keywords:Gnetum Production, profitability and constraints
Â This study analyzed the economics of Gnetum africanum production in Ukanafun Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom State. Data collected through a multi stage sampling from 100 Gnetum farmers were analyzed using descriptive statistics, production function analysis, profit function analysis, cost and return analysis as well as Likert Scale rating. Result revealed that the study area was dominated by female (66%), married (70%), literate,(84%) respondents with mean of 13 years of experience. Majority (45%) were within the age bracket of 41-50 years with mean household size of 8 persons whose farms were mostly (88%) located within a distance of 1-2 kilometers. Result of the production function revealed that educational attainment and farm size were positive and significant to Gnetum output at the 1 percent level of significance, respectively. Result of the profit function also showed that while land value, capital and cost of planting material had a significant negative effect on Gnetum profitability at the 1 % level, output price of Gnetum had a positive significant effect on Gnetum profit. Result of the cost and returns analysis revealed a total revenue and cost of N343, 671 and N113, 051.4 per hectare with a Gross Margin and Net profit of N269, 262.8 and N230, 619.6 respectively. Lastly, the major constraints to Gnetum production in order of severity were: rampant incidence of theft, high cost of land rent, low price of Gnetum, poor access to credit facilities and high cost of production inputs. The study recommended that policies that would enhance educational attainment and total hectares of cultivation, reduce land rental value and cost of planting material as well as access to credit facilities and the formation of local vigilante groups to carry out periodic farm surveillance with view to reducing the rampant incidence of Gnetum theft as the way out
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