Livelihood diversification and its impact on cocoa production in Morobe and East New Britain Provinces of Papua New Guinea
Cocoa is an important cash crop of Papua New Guinea (PNG). Despite considerable Government investment, with its technical research, development, and extension (RD&E) focus, productivity remains less than potential. This study was carried out to establish the livelihood activities diversification and impact on cocoa production of selected areas of Morobe and East New Britain Provinces of PNG. The specific objective was to establish whether farmers’ livelihood diversification activities affected cocoa production of the study areas. A cross-sectional descriptive study, in the context of phenomenological reflection involving semi-structured interviews and discussions was used to study the livelihood diversity and its implications on cocoa production in the selected provinces. Data were analysed using NVivo software. It was found that the main causes of farmer engagement of diversified livelihood activities were due to: land shortage, land tenure, minimising risk, cultural factors, farming system practices, opportunities, comparative advantage, and with the effects of modern changes. The main rationale behind such diversified livelihood activities was to raise household’s income portfolio and to improved status in the community. Consequently, smallholder farmers do not put full effort into cocoa production.
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