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Knowledge of vitamin A deficiency and crop adoption: Evidence from a field experiment in Mozambique

Rute M. Caeiro and Pedro Vicente ()

Agricultural Economics, 2020, vol. 51, issue 2, 175-190

Abstract: Vitamin A deficiency is a widespread public health problem in Sub‐Saharan Africa. This paper analyzes the impact of an intervention fighting vitamin A deficiency through the promotion of production and consumption of orange‐fleshed sweet potato (OFSP). We conducted a randomized evaluation of OFSP‐related training to female farmers in Mozambique, who were also the primary caretakers of preschool children. The treatment consisted of group and individual‐level training where basic knowledge about nutrition was taught, and planting and cooking skills related specifically to OFSP were developed. We find considerable increases in nutrition‐related knowledge, as well as knowledge about cooking and planting OFSP, which persist after more than a year. We also observe clear evidence of adoption of OFSP for production in the short‐ and medium‐run, which spreads through social networks.

Date: 2020
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