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An analysis of the problems in the transfer of technology of high yielding rice varieties in Sri Lanka Appied agricultural research for small farms in Asia

by Ranaweera, N.F.C. Department of Agriculture, Peradeniya (Sri Lanka). Div. of Agricultural Economics and Projects; Food and Fertilizer Technology Center for the Asian and Pacific Region, Taiwan (Taiwan); International Seminar Workshop on Applied Agricultural Research and Development for Small Farms Los Baños (Filipinas) 13-18 May 1985.
Series: FFTC Book Series - Food and Fertilizer Technology Center (Taiwan).Publisher: Taiwan (Taiwan) 1985Description: p. 22-51.Subject(s): PEQUENO AGRICULTOR | ARROZ | VARIEDADES DE RENDIMIENTO ELEVADO | PRODUCCION VEGETAL | RENDIMIENTO | COSTOS DE PRODUCCION | MANO DE OBRA | SRI LANKA | SMALL FARMERS | RICE | PLANT PRODUCTION | YIELDS | PRODUCTION COSTS | MANPOWER | SRI LANKA | PETIT AGRICULTEUR | RIZ | PRODUCTION VEGETALE | RENDEMENT | COUT DE PRODUCTION | MAIN D'OEUVRE | SRI LANKA In: Summary: The data presented above needs to be treated cautiously, as it deals with only one cropping season and one specific area while the analysis itself is preliminary. However, it suggests a number of possible constraints, and their relative importance, in the three areas. The supply of labor for rice production appears to be adequate, with the possible exception of a few farms, particularly in the rainfed areas, where off-farm work may interfere with the timing of the application of some inputs. Virtually all farmers use recommended New Improved Varieties, which require an assured water supply for best performance. Supply of seed was not a problem. The question, however, still arises as to whether the high yielding, short statured varieties bred for irrigated conditions suit rainfed situations, or the quasi-rainfed conditions found in areas irrigated from minor tanks. If weed infestation becomes a problem under rainfed conditions, fertilizer response is greatly diminished, and yields decline accordingly. At present, farmers apply expensive herbicides or engage in heavy manual labor, of a combination of these, to control weeds. The use of fertilizer appears to be lower than that recommended. The lower yields obtained by farmers could be attributed to this. The above data at least offers some indications of the reasons for the 'gap', and also signifies the importance of the interaction between farm and off-farm activities. The study justifies the need for further research in this area of economic analysis. It is clear that examination of constraints on a single crop basis does not adequately explain the reasons for the extent of a yield 'gap' in a single crop. A complete understanding of the interactions between farm, off-farm and non-farm activities, as well as the interactions within the different components of the farm, will lead to better policies in small farm development. Up until now, the emphasis has been on increasing the cropping area and production of selected individual crops. While this has made a contribution, particularly in terms of projected production on a macro level, it has not adequately explained why Sri Lanka still has to import substantial quantities of other crops
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The data presented above needs to be treated cautiously, as it deals with only one cropping season and one specific area while the analysis itself is preliminary. However, it suggests a number of possible constraints, and their relative importance, in the three areas. The supply of labor for rice production appears to be adequate, with the possible exception of a few farms, particularly in the rainfed areas, where off-farm work may interfere with the timing of the application of some inputs. Virtually all farmers use recommended New Improved Varieties, which require an assured water supply for best performance. Supply of seed was not a problem. The question, however, still arises as to whether the high yielding, short statured varieties bred for irrigated conditions suit rainfed situations, or the quasi-rainfed conditions found in areas irrigated from minor tanks. If weed infestation becomes a problem under rainfed conditions, fertilizer response is greatly diminished, and yields decline accordingly. At present, farmers apply expensive herbicides or engage in heavy manual labor, of a combination of these, to control weeds. The use of fertilizer appears to be lower than that recommended. The lower yields obtained by farmers could be attributed to this. The above data at least offers some indications of the reasons for the 'gap', and also signifies the importance of the interaction between farm and off-farm activities. The study justifies the need for further research in this area of economic analysis. It is clear that examination of constraints on a single crop basis does not adequately explain the reasons for the extent of a yield 'gap' in a single crop. A complete understanding of the interactions between farm, off-farm and non-farm activities, as well as the interactions within the different components of the farm, will lead to better policies in small farm development. Up until now, the emphasis has been on increasing the cropping area and production of selected individual crops. While this has made a contribution, particularly in terms of projected production on a macro level, it has not adequately explained why Sri Lanka still has to import substantial quantities of other crops

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