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Characterization and diversity of the market-gardening production systems and their interactions with urban and peri-urban environment in Southern-Benin, West Africa

Ahouangninou C., Martin T., Bio-Bangana S., Huat J., Parrot L., Vidogbéna F., Medali D., Houssou C., Edorh P., Boko M., Fayomi B.. 2013. Continental Journal of Sustainable Development, 4 (1) : p. 24-38.

The market-gardening production plays an important role in contribution to food availability. However this activity is limited by constraints and also generates harmful effects on health and environment. Thus to ensure the sustainability of this activity is a great challenge. A survey on market-gardening farms management was carried out from 2009 to 2010 on 197 farmers in production site of Cotonou, Sèmè-kpodji and Ouidah in Southern Benin. The aim of study was to characterize and categorize the farms in order to identify the means by which this activity could be improved and made socially, economically and ecologically more sustainable. The production was characterized by a weakness of farming rotations, the use of chemical and organic fertilizers as well as the use of chemical pesticides in the pest and disease control. Farmers' annual earning varied widely with an average of 917,646 XOF. About one quarter of the farmers earn less than the minimum wage. By combining Multiple Correspondence Analysis (MCA) and Hierarchical Cluster Analysis (HCA), we identified seven types of farmers. Development Project focusing on sustainability improvement of the production and income of the producers could target the first five categories of market-gardeners who experience more hardship (difficult access to land, challenges with irrigation and pests and diseases control). These farms depend mostly on chemical pesticide. Authorities especially at the municipal level should help with a better land allocation, particularly for farmers in Cotonou and Sèmè-kpodji. Continuing education and awareness raising efforts by Extension services towards producers about health and environmental hazards of synthetic pesticides could improve sustainability of vegetable growing in Southern-Benin. (Résumé d'auteur)

Mots-clés : bénin

Thématique : Structure agraire; Systèmes et modes de culture

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