Livelihood Strategies of Female Indigenous Vegetable Farmers’ in Osun State, Nigeria

  •  Adeolu Ayanwale    
  •  Christianah Amusan    


This study examined the socioeconomic characteristics, income profile and pattern of livelihood diversification strategies of resource-constrained female indigenous vegetable farmers in Osun state, which may serve as entry point for poverty alleviation and women empowerment in the study area.

A total of 240 female indigenous vegetable farmers were surveyed through the use of pre-tested structured questionnaire during the 2011/2012 production cycle. The study established that the majority of the respondents were below 50 years of age (73%), married (78%) with more than 7 years of formal education (51.7%) and cultivated less than 1 hectare of vegetables (65%). Vegetable production is the most important source of income contributing about half of the total income of the farmers but its share reduces as total income increases. Cluster analysis identified six livelihood portfolio combinations- sole vegetable farming, vegetable and livestock farming, part time vegetable and livestock farming, mixed farming, arable crop farming, part time mixed farming. Part time mixed farming was the most successful livelihood portfolio because it had the highest daily per capita income (N 378.55), the highest proportion of the rich (72.73%) and the lowest proportion of the poor (4.55%), while, vegetable and livestock farming was most common among the poorest farmers (53.85%).

A major policy implication of the results of the study is that multiple complementary economic activities such as milling and other food processing activities should be encouraged among the female indigenous vegetable farmers, to enable them generate sufficient incomes to improve on their livelihood.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.