Greener Journal of Agricultural Sciences

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Kimengsi Tosam

Greener Journal of  Agricultural Sciences Vol. 3 (8), pp. 606-617, August 2013.

 ISSN: 2276-7770 

Research Paper

Manuscript Number: 022713505

 

Climate Variability and Cocoa Production in Meme Division of Cameroon: Agricultural Development Policy options

 

*1Jude Ndzifon  Kimengsi and 2Joseph Ngong Tosam

 

1Pan African Institute for Development West Africa, Buea. 

2Department of Economics and Management, University of Buea, Cameroon.

 

*Corresponding Author’s Email: ukjubypro2 @ yahoo.com


Abstract:

This study examines the effect of climate variability on cocoa production which is the mainstay of the population of Meme Division. Meme Division stands as one of the highest cocoa producing divisions of the Cameroon. Field studies accompanied by the administration of 155 questionnaires (50 each for Kumba and Mbonge Subdivisions and 55 for Konye Subdivision) were employed. Information on climatic variables (temperature and rainfall) and cocoa output for 21 years (1990-2010) was also obtained. The data was analyzed with the use of the four point likert scale survey and the coefficient of variation (CV). The results showed that the CV for rainfall (15.1%) and temperature (11.0%) all exceeded the variability threshold of 10% indicating that they exhibit significant variability. Trend analysis for cocoa output shows that unusual variations were experienced in some years. This was further confirmed by the Jarque-Bera statistics of 0.68 (P-Value = 0.71) which indicates that the output of cocoa is not normally distributed over time. It was also observed that the increasing unpredictability of rainfall and temperatures tend to confuse the cocoa crop and the farmers as their traditional farming calendar have been distorted; no sooner has the cocoa crop been able to adjust with the new climatic scenario than they are confronted with a different pattern. Furthermore, farmers noted a drop in cocoa output per hectare. This has led to a reduction in incomes realised giving rise to limited possibility for expansion. It is seemingly evident that their present adaptation strategies are yet to contain this ugly situation. The study suggests a number of agricultural development planning options which the government and the local population can embark on to develop a resilience framework for cocoa farmers in Meme Division in the face of expected variability in climate.
 
Keywords: Climate variability, Cocoa, pests and diseases, livelihood, agricultural planning.

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