AS  Vol.12 No.10 , October 2021
An Assessment of Youth Involvement in Agricultural Activities in Eastern Cape Province, South Africa
Abstract: Youth, who make up the majority of South Africa’s population and will be the future responsible citizens, confront numerous obstacles, including a lack of access to land, finance, markets, practical training, and incentives. The low interest of youngsters in agriculture is attributed to the poor status of agricultural output in Africa’s rural areas due to a lack of government support. The study was conducted to assess the involvement of youths in agricultural activities in Eastern Cape Province, South Africa. The convenient sampling technique was used, and qualitative data were collected from 104 participants using a pre-tested structured questionnaire. The questionnaire covered demographic characteristics, land ownership status, contact with extension personnel, and involvement in farming activities, funding, and constraints. Descriptive statistics and chi-square test were used for data analysis. The results showed that there were more males (59.6%) participants than females (40.4%) and the majority (74%) were between 20 - 35 years of age, 52.9% had senior secondary school level of education and came from a household size ranging from 6 - 19. Approximately 88.5% of participants had an agricultural background with an annual income of less than R20,000.00. More than half (51.9 %) of the study population, had farming experience less than 5 years, while 52.9% owned less than 2 hectares of land, and 78.8% were self-employed. Findings revealed that age (χ2 = 5.519, P < 0.01) and farming experience (χ2 = 43.981, P < 0.001) had a significant association with extension contact and farming enterprises respectively. Furthermore, lack of land ownership, high input costs, access to credit, visibility of extension personnel, lack of market access, low returns, high cost of mechanization, and lack of farming knowledge were the most ranked constraints hindering youth involvement in agricultural activities. Youth involvement in agricultural activities can be improved through land availability, financial support, and information dissemination on rural development programs by extension personnel.
Cite this paper: Mthi, S. , Yawa, M. , Tokozwayo, S. , Ikusika, O. , Nyangiwe, N. , Thubela, T. , Tyasi, T. , Washaya, S. , Gxasheka, M. , Mpisana, Z. and Nkohla, M. (2021) An Assessment of Youth Involvement in Agricultural Activities in Eastern Cape Province, South Africa. Agricultural Sciences, 12, 1034-1047. doi: 10.4236/as.2021.1210066.

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