XW Disease shock, household livelihood strategies and welfare: evidence from banana producing households in Uganda
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Gloria Mbabazi, Joseph Kyanjo, Nasser Mulumba, Elisabetta Gotor, Enoch Kikulwe. (11/12/2019). XW Disease shock, household livelihood strategies and welfare: evidence from banana producing households in Uganda. Peru: CGIAR Research Program on Roots, Tubers and Bananas.
Farmers experience various shocks that result into massive crop failure there by affecting their livelihoods. Besides the shocks related to climate change, the effects of other types of shocks along with the alternative livelihood strategies farmers employ to cope have not been largely explored. This study focused on a specific disease shock (BXW) that resulted into extreme crop losses thereby affecting farmers’ livelihoods. We provide evidence on the impact of BXW shock on the welfare of banana producing households as well as the alternative livelihood strategies they pursued to improve their welfare over time in addition to adopting the BXW control practices. Utilizing panel data from over 1000 households in the four banana-growing regions in Uganda that were drastically affected by BXW, we examined the likely coping strategies that they employ once hit by the pandemic. Farmers devised short-term livelihood strategies to recover from the BXW shock. The key coping strategies employed include increased production of annual crops mainly maize and beans, reduction in consumption of bananas, diversifying into livestock production and off-farm activities to earn a living. Several institutional and household characteristics such as size, education level of the household head and access to loans/savings are found to be important determinants of coping strategies. As a result, households were able to improve their welfare over time after experiencing the effects of BXW. Based on the findings, we conclude that: first, taking longer to devise mitigation measures to shocks may have a negative impact on productivity but this can be reduced by timely adoption of recommended technologies; and second, the government needs to devise and implement policies to sustainably overcome effects of disease outbreaks in a timely manner.
- Agricultural Research Knowledge