Productivity of Rural Labour Employment in Small-holder Food crop Farming in Nigeria

O.R. Adeniyi


The rate of unemployment of school leavers in urban areas and cities is continually rising fast over the years; talk less of the situation with the less privileged rural communities which must be worst hit. However, the rate and type of unemployment of labour in such rural communities are unknown. Also, the measurement of labour input in the input-output functions of farms has some inherent problems in that what should be required is a measure of labour actually utilized during a production period and not a measure of total labour available whether used or unused, more so when the family labour constitutes a greater proportion of total farm labour. The need to find solutions to these problems provided the rationale for this study, thus, appropriate analytical techniques were applied to estimate labour employment situation and the respective productivities of each component of the farm labour among the small-holder food crop farmers in the study area. Findings revealed that the rate of unemployment among rural small-holder farmers is approximately 29 percent (or 0.29) a case of disguised underemployment rather than disguised unemployment or full employment. Family labour is less productive than hired labour and its further increase in total farm labour could have a depressing effect on value of total farm output. Appropriate improvement measures were suggested.

Key words: Productivity, rural labour employment, small-holder, inhibition to labour mobility, political will and zeal                                                                  

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