A phenomenological inquiry to understand Ugandan farmers’ perceived barriers to fertilizer use
Keywords:Uganda, fertilizer adoption, qualitative inquiry, poverty trap theory, international development, extension education
Sub-Saharan African (SSA) countries hold the promise of becoming the second breadbasket of the world if they adopt modern farming practices, including the use of fertilizers and other agricultural inputs. Increasing food production is imminent for all nations, especially in SSA due to the growing global population. Agricultural input adoption, such as fertilizers, leads to an increase in productivity; however, adoption rates among SSA nations remain chronically low. Using a phenomenological lens and qualitative research methods to gather interview data from 30 Ugandan subsistence farmers in situ, we described what and how farmers experienced in regard making decisions to adopt or reject fertilizers. Findings indicated that farmers experienced two poverty traps, resource and cultural beliefs. Recommended interventions include increasing participation in farmer groups and increasing participation in Extension training on the use of agricultural inputs, especially fertilizers.
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