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African Journal of Food, Agriculture, Nutrition and Development
Rural Outreach Program
ISSN: 1684-5358
EISSN: 1684-5374
Vol. 10, No. 1, 2010, pp. 1982-2000
Bioline Code: nd10004
Full paper language: English
Document type: Research Article
Document available free of charge

African Journal of Food, Agriculture, Nutrition and Development, Vol. 10, No. 1, 2010, pp. 1982-2000

 en Effects Of Tenure And Land Use Factors On Food Security Among Rural Households In The Dry Savannas Of Nigeria
Bamire, AS


Defining food security in terms of availability and access to sufficient food to meet dietary needs for a productive and healthy life, this paper assessed the effects of property rights to land on household food security in the Savanna zone of northern Nigeria. The paper analyzed household expenditure profile, examined households’ tenure and land use factors, determined the effect of these factors on household food security status, and predicted/classified households into food security groups based on these factors. Primary data were generated from a cross-section of 180 farming households during the 2006/2007 production season, using pre-tested structured questionnaire. Data were collected on tenure and land use characteristics, input-output relationships, cropping patterns, land improvement techniques, and on household expenditure and income. Focus group discussions and key informant interviews were also conducted. Secondary data were obtained from Local Government secretariats and the National Population Commission. Data were analyzed using descriptive statistics, probit regression and discriminant techniques. Results showed that the customary tenure arrangement is the most important way by which farm households gain access and manage land in the zone. On the average, households cultivated less than two hectares of land with less than two years of fallow. Inorganic fertilizer was the most commonly used land improvement technique by all households, but at rates below recommended dosage due to scarcity and high cost. Only 25% of the households were categorized as food secure and 75% as food insecure. Expenditure on food accounted for over 30% of total expenditure and was significantly higher for the food secure households. Probit estimates revealed that age, farm size, use of land improvement techniques, membership of association, and access to extension service were significant determinants of households’ food security options, while these factors except age were identified as the most powerful discriminators and predictors of household’s food security options using discriminant analysis, with 92.7% of the sampled households correctly and satisfactorily classified. This suggests that meaningful land intensification through proper management and effective extension service is the likely development pathway in the study area. In addition, the classification of households can support policy making strategies that target specific groups for government and non-government programme implementation.

land, food, households, savanna, Nigeria

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