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A Pricipal component Analysis of Variables that Influence participation in Mentorship by New Freehold Growers In Kwazulu Natal, South Africa

Author Affiliations

  • 1Department of Agricultural Economics, Education and Extension Botswana, College of Agriculture, BOTSWANA
  • 2Department of Agricultural Economics, Education and Extension Botswana, College of Agriculture, BOTSWANA

Res. J. Agriculture & Forestry Sci., Volume 2, Issue (4), Pages 1-8, April,8 (2014)


Changing landscape of the South Africa (SA) agriculture has necessitated institutionalization of mentorship as part of post-settlement services for emerging black farmers. This paper, seeks to report on the socioeconomic characteristics of the surveyed sugarcane growers,identify their socioeconomic and farm factors that influence their decision to participate in mentorship. The paper also seeks tocome up with recommendation for improving acess to mentorship by New Freehold Growers (NFGs). The forty three (43) sampled NFGs were mostly male and the majority of sampled had no educational background in either Agriculture or any business related field. However, most of the respondents had prior experience in general management. Relatively few surveyed growers had prior experience in managing sugarcane farms. Further, most of the sample growers had gained financial management experience while working elsewhere and or through formal training. The principal component analysis (PCA) results revealed six components for predictor variables that Influence participation in mentorship by NFGs. The six components are; old-experienced communal farmer, educated farmer with business management experience, large-scale commercial farmer with formal agricultural education, fulltime non-affiliated farmer, male farmer with acquired cane farm management experience and fulltime participant with no business management experience. The paper recommends that attention be paid to designing and implementing policies that target NFGs, given their diverse socio-economic and farm characteristics. Detailed needs analysis and profiling of participants therefore, ought to be carried out beforehand. The results also show that joint-farm ownership (group dynamics) may have negative impact on NFGs� decision to participate in mentorship. Hence, policy makers should explore different models for specific farm operations and/or farm ownership structures.


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