How to improve agricultural extension services


The study has reaffirmed the critical role of extension programmes in enhancing farm productivity and household income. It is, therefore, recommended that agricultural extension service delivery should be boosted through timely recruitment, periodic training of agents and provision of adequate logistics. Background


What are agricultural extension services?

The AREP is credited for its attempts to introduce several reform measures, methods, and approaches in agricultural extension services delivery, which, among others, include the farmer-centered participatory group approach, projectization, privatization, and pluralism in agricultural extension system.

How to begin work in agriculture?

Chapter 4 – The economic contributions of agricultural extension to agricultural and rural development. Investment indicators: Agricultural research and extension. The conceptual foundation for extension impact. A note on statistical methods and issues for economic evaluation. Estimates of economic impacts: A summary.

What are the principles of agricultural extension?

Government and partner agencies alike have experimented and tried various methods to improve agriculture extension service in order to improve agriculture …

What is the function of an agricultural extension officer?

 · Extension services are designed to assist farmers and ranchers. These services include the business information, advice and support provided by specialists in regional offices around the province and at extension events, the toll-free Agriculture Knowledge Centre phone line, and a variety of print and electronic publications.


How do you improve extension services?

Agricultural information and extension services in developing countries can be improved by adapting the pedagogical model, using information and communications technology (ICT) to reach farmers directly with more tailored and timely information, incentivizing trainers based on learning outcomes, and leveraging social …

What is agricultural extension How it helps in improved agricultural production?

1973: Extension is a service or system which assists farm people, through educational procedures, in improving farming methods and techniques, increasing production efficiency and income, bettering their standard of living and lifting social and educational standards.

What are agricultural extension strategies?

The National Agricultural Extension Strategy therefore, aims to contribute in achieving the National and international development goals, such as: (i)Vision 2020 which considers agricultural sector as the main source of economic growth of the country, (ii) Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper which currently entered its …

What are the problems of agricultural extension services?

The main difficulties identified by extension agents regarding technical services providing to farmers were lack of resources, poor knowledge regarding improved agricultural technologies, illiteracy among the farmers and communication problems.

What is the importance of extension services?

An agricultural extension service offers technical advice on agriculture to farmers, and also supplies them with the necessary inputs and services to support their agricultural production. It provides information to farmers and passes to the farmers new ideas developed by agricultural research stations.

How will extension work activities will help you to contribute to the society?

In society, extension work helps in increasing productivity, enhancing skills and abilities, focusing on growth and helping people to work on their own future development.

What are 4 possible extension strategies?

Extension strategies include rebranding, price discounting and seeking new markets. Rebranding is the creation of a new look and feel for an established product in order to differentiate the product from its competitors.

How can agricultural extension best help small farmers?

Agricultural extension program will help to increase productivity of the farm, reduce poverty, minimise the food productivity etc. this can be done by the teaching technical and managerial skill and demonstrate the new relevant technology at the farmer field.

What is the importance of agricultural extension in rural development?

Agricultural extension plays a significant role in community development. Its role in testing and disseminating research-based agricultural knowledge and technology to rural people results in improvements in the agricultural sector (Suvedi, 2011. (2011).

What are the challenges of agricultural extension system when operated in a country?

In addition, agricultural extension suffers from many problems that limit the performance of its role in value chains the development, including: weak linkages between research and extension institutions, the erosion of extension staff and the inadequacy of available workers with their new tasks required, with low …

Why the extension Services does not do well in the developing countries?

Extension work is a very difficult task in less-developed countries. It is not carried out from air-conditioned offices or laboratories by formally dressed persons, but mostly in the field under severe weather and logistic conditions with minimum facilities.

How do you overcome difficult challenges in developing an extension program?

A way to overcome these challenges is to look at different programme development ideas and approaches, analysing how they function in practice, as well as their advantages and disadvantages. This chapter presents an overview of the programme development process, with an emphasis on local-level extension work.

How to improve convergence of agricultural extension services?

Improving convergence through harmonization —The ATMA has made some progress in the convergence of agricultural extension services at the district level. Further convergence of the extension services at all levels requires a careful harmonization of work plans of the Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana, national missions, and other schemes that will require support of the extension services to succeed. Allocation of resources for agricultural extension services should be made under these national schemes to support the ATMA activities. This will not only increase the operational resources for effectively targeting the ATMA activities but will also help the national schemes to meet their objectives and make ATMA sustainable in the long run.

What are the three main categories of agricultural extension service providers?

The agricultural extension service providers who have a stake in the NAEP can be grouped in three main categories: GOs, NGOs, and private sector and agribusiness enterprises. Each of these broad groups has a crucial role to play in creating an environment that ensures optimal utilization of all available resources for successful implementation of NAEP. However, in terms of development approach, motivation, resources, and competence, there is much variation within each of the broad groups. For this reason, the detailed implementation plans within the overall NAEP strategy varied widely.

Why is agricultural extension so expensive?

Providing agricultural extension services to famers is costly and challenging because of several reasons: farmers are geographically dispersed in difficult-to-reach places (Nakasone and Torero, 2016 ); some of their information requirements are highly localized ( Binswanger and Rosenzweig, 1986 ); and large-scale extension provision faces several governance challenges ( Birner and Anderson, 2007 ). ICT applications have the potential to address some of these challenges. Compared to face-to-face extension, they are cheaper because they do not rely on costly and time-consuming travelling. This may also allow for more timely and regular provision of farming advice ( Baumüller, 2012; Cole and Fernando, 2012 ). Most ICT applications for agricultural extension rely on SMS and audio elements and focus on weather reports, disease outbreaks, general farming advice and information about agricultural prices. As noted by Aker et al. (2016 ), these are the “low-hanging fruits” of extension advice as they are not location and client-specific (in economic terms, this type of information has the character of a public good, see Birner and Anderson, 2007 ), although precise and location-specific weather reports are still a challenge. However, there are also some ICT applications aiming for “higher-hanging fruits”. The tool iCow, which is widely used in Kenya provides livestock keepers with cow-tailored advice ( Baumüller, 2012 ). Studies that assess the impacts of ICT-based extension systems have usually found some positive effects. Camacho and Conover (2011) found that weekly weather reports reduce the risk of crops losses of Columbian farmers by 4% to 7%. Cole and Fernando (2012) found that the service Avaaj Otalo increased adoption of effective pesticides and of lucrative but risky crops ( Cole and Fernando, 2012 ). Casaburi et al. (2014) found that the use of farm-cycle based SMS advice increased yield by 11.5% in Kenya. In contrast, Fafchamps and Minten (2012) found that the mobile service Reuters Market Light had no significant positive impacts on farmers in India. It is important to note that in all of these studies, the counterfactual is not the traditional extension service. A properly functioning extension service could have advantages over ICT-based extension because it may be able to provide more farm-specific advice and it can work with field demonstrations. In addition, some studies suggest that the question of who provides agricultural extension advice may play a large role in a farmer’s decision to uptake the advice ( Buck and Alwang, 2011, 2011; Moser and Barrett, 2006 ). As noted by Srinivasan (2007, p. 350), farmers tend to adhere more to advice that contains “not only the facts, but the analysis of the facts within the context”. In addition to easing the work of traditional extension system, ICT applications may also facilitate peer extension through social networks such as Facebook and WhatsApp. For example, in the Facebook group “ Small Scale Farmers (Farming as Business) ”, 400,000 farmers from across the world discuss their challenges and opportunities ( Small scale farmers – farming as business, 2018 ). Here, however, the quality of the content may not always be assured.

What will happen to agriculture related businesses?

Agriculturally related businesses will probably decline. Fertilizer, seed, implement and other input suppliers will face a greatly reduced market for their services. Lower levels of output will also eliminate the demand for much of the local processors such as cotton gins, grain elevators, etc. The reduction in the numbers of these types of firms, coupled with the reduction in the number of farms, will likely result in increased unemployment and/or migration of these people to other areas.

What will happen if irrigated land is reverted to livestock?

The majority of irrigated producers in this area, if current conditions continue, will be forced out of production by the laws of economics. Their land will revert to range land with less than native productivity and the income from most of the irrigated production will be lost to the region. If land reverts from irrigation to extensive livestock operations, there are important regional economic implications. Producers buy inputs such as fertilizer and fuel from local suppliers, and market products to local processors such as cotton gins, grain elevators, etc. This means the adjustments from irrigated crop production to livestock operations will affect many phases of the local economy.

What is private sector agriculture?

In India, the private agricultural sector plays a major role in agricultural extension service provision. It fills the gap of inefficient input delivery and customized advisory services. The private sector includes crop science industry, seed and input companies, distributors and agro-dealers, service providers of various kinds, food processors and retailers, and the content providers for agro-advisories. Contract farming is an increasingly important vehicle for agricultural extension. The term used in the literature for extension in this context is “embedded services,” where companies deliver information with the sale of inputs or the marketing of products ( Feder et al., 2011 ). There are an estimated 282,000 input dealers in India. They are pillars of their communities in rural or semirural areas and have interest in offering quality services to their farmer clients. The agro-input dealers and the farm-input suppliers selling through them have interest in presale and sometimes continue after-sale advice also to the growers ( Ferroni and Yuan, 2011 ).

Why are vegetables not shown in the Trans-Pecos region?

Vegetable crops other than cantaloupe are not shown because they are characterized by high market risk and the market for vegetables at this time cannot be shown to be stable enough to support a massive increase in production. Based on the disparity between current crop prices and prices required to break even it must be concluded that the majority of land in the Trans-Pecos region will not be held in crop production activities under current management systems indefinitely with the current input and output price situation.

Part I – Overview of extension in agricultural and rural development

Chapter 4 – The economic contributions of agricultural extension to agricultural and rural development

Part II – Improving extension programmes and processes

Selecting alternative approaches and models: Which model for which purpose?

How can agriculture information and extension services be improved?

Agricultural information and extension services in developing countries can be improved by adapting the pedagogical model, using information and communications technology (ICT) to reach farmers directly with more tailored and timely information, incentivizing trainers based on learning outcomes, and leveraging social networks for last-mile information delivery.

How can farmers improve their extension programs?

Providing farmers with tools that simplify a new practice can improve the effectiveness of extension programs. In Bangladesh, providing farmers with leaf color charts to inform fertilizer application aligned farmers’ timing of urea application with productive periods during the growing cycle [9]. In Kenya, giving farmers measuring spoons led to higher fertilizer adoption [4].

How do trainers help farmers?

Trainers are more likely to improve technology adoption among farmers in their programs when incentivized. Trainers’ incentives are not always aligned with outcomes for their trainees, and in several settings, better aligning those incentives improved adoption of improved technologies. Giving farmers a mechanism to provide feedback on trainings can increase engagement , and incentivizing trainers based on adoption of a new technology can help improve learning [13] [14] [2].

How can information and communication technologies improve on traditional extension?

Information and communications technologies can improve on traditional extension by tailoring recommendations to farmers’ needs at relevant times during the agricultural cycle. Traditional extension models rely on in-person visits with standard training messages for a small number of farmers. These trainings are often infrequent, meaning …

Why are extension and information services important?

In the context of a new or novel technology where farmers are relatively uninformed, extension and information services can serve an important role to help farmers learn about the benefits of a technology. In India, farmer field day demonstrations led to 40 percent higher adoption of a new submergence tolerant rice variety, compared to 30 percent adoption in villages without demonstrations [6]. In Sierra Leone, a randomized evaluation of the rollout of an improved rice seed variety, NERICA, found that yields only increased for farmers who received extension services alongside free seed kits. Farmers who received seeds alone did not experience gains in yields [7].

Why are extension services so low?

Traditional extension services may have low use in part because they focus on maximizing yields rather than maximizing farmers’ profits. For example, the Kenyan Ministry of Agriculture based recommended fertilizer amounts on maximizing yields, which may serve broader food security goals, whereas the optimal amount from the farmers’ perspective to maximize profit was much lower [4]. In Bali, seaweed farmers used the optimal amount and spacing of seaweed. Adopting the recommendations of a local NGO-run extension program would have reduced farmer profits (but increased yields) [5].

What is agricultural extension?

Agricultural extension is the most common program model used to transmit information to farmers in developing countries, and it is often one of national agriculture ministries’ primary programs. Traditional government agricultural extension programs—for example, top-down approaches like training and visit—often focus on extending commonplace …

Nature of the extension work

Since most of the population of the countries, hardest hit by AIDS, lives in rural areas, a large number of people affected by HIV/AIDS in sub Saharan Africa are, directly or indirectly, engaged in farming. The workers, who have the most frequent contact with the small-scale farmers, are the field extension agents.

Impact on extension and partner institutions

Extension staff apart from being more exposed to the risk of contracting the HIV infection due to their frequent visits to HIV/AIDS infected rural areas, are themselves suffering from the pandemic in many ways. Many of them are sick, some chronically.

Emergence of unexpected clientele and extension-demand environment

The epidemic is changing the traditional composition of the clientele for extension services. In the areas of high HIV prevalence, the category of healthy and able-bodied men, women and youth, in the late adolescence to middle age range, is the one that has been most affected by high levels of morbidity and mortality.


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