Effects of Rural Non-Farm Employment on Farm Improvement in Taraba State, Nigeria
The aim of this research is to present farmers' strategies to engage in non-farm employment of farmers in Taraba State, Nigeria, and analyze factors influencing farm investment of the respondents. The study employed quantitative research methods by interviewing 76 rural households in 11 villages using purposive sampling. The collected data includes socio economic conditions of respondents and their non-farm income which was analyze with of SPSS. The respondents’ consisted of stable (40.8%) and the rest were unstable non-farm earning. The stable income source group were government officer and workers in town while the unstable income sourced group were business/merchandizer and technicians. Determinants of type of farm improvement were analyzed by age of respondents, level of education of respondent, land size, social network, access to loan and type of non-farm income and children’s’ education investment which was treated as an alternative choice. The result of the logistic model revealed that all estimated variables had expected signs and 3 variables were statistically significant. These variables were, highest level of education of respondents (university and above), social network and income at confident interval of 95%.The result reveals that all respondents used their non-farm income to improve their farm; 83.9% on livestock for commercial purpose and 82.2% on farm expansion for food security.All respondents also use their non-farm income on children education. It was observe that those with stable non-farm income spend more on children education by sending their children to private school while the other group invested on children’s schooling by sending their children to public schools. The results of this study leads to recommendation that education, social network and income were important to farm improvement in the studied area. Therefore, it is important that authority focus on job creation in the studied area in order to provide non-farm work to low educated and marginal group of people because non-farm income has shown to be essential for farmers to improve their farm and children education regardless of types of non-farm income.
Keywords- Non-farm, livelihood strategy and farm improvement.