A case study of the effect of a key innovation on farmers adoption behaviour
Irrigation is one of the important components to increase agricultural production, primarily in areas where the annual rainfall is inadequate. There are many areas in New Zealand which are subjected to drought due to inadequate rainfall. One of the areas is Waipara, where this study has been conducted. This study examined changes in farming practices that have occurred since an irrigation scheme was completed in the area. A qualitative method was chosen as the best method to be used in this study. The objectives of this study were to assess the impact of technology-adoption and subsequent farming practices, and to assess the linkages between the various components of the adoption process. The information for this study was obtained by interviewing twelve farmers, including three farmers in the case study, using semi structured interviews. It is concluded that irrigation was the key or the trigger of the change in farming practices, particularly for those farmers under the Glenmark Irrigation Scheme. The results showed that with irrigation, farmers could change their farming practices from pasture to cropping systems. Irrigation enabled the farmers to intensify and diversify their farming systems allowing the farmers to grow more crops, including grapes, which have a great potential in the area. Consequently their yields increased and their incomes improved. Irrigation also provided more employment opportunities, and benefited public services within the area. Generally, irrigation benefited farmers as individuals, and the district as a whole.... [Show full abstract]
Keywordschange; technology adoption; income; farmers; irrigation; farming systems; adoption behaviour; key innovations; pasture; cropping systems
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