Finger millet ( Eleusine coracana
L.) is a major food security
crop in Uganda, particularly in dry areas of the eastern and northern region.
Unfortunately, yields are steadily declining at farm level and this coupled with
lack of comprehension of factors responsible has provoked concern among farmers
and research scientists. This study was conducted in eastern Uganda to establish
the socioeconomic causes of millet yield decline. One fifty finger millet farmers
were randomly selected and interviewed. A Cobb-Douglas production function was
used to assess the critical socioeconomic factors influencing finger millet production.
Seeding rate, labour, tools and equipment, production experience, and weed management
were found to be the most constraining factors. Manure application, farmer-group
involvement and ownership of draught power (oxen and ploughs) were also critical
issues in the production of the crop. The future of the crop largely lies in addressing
the factors that limit use of inputs and the integration of indigenous knowledge
in finger millet production research and development.