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Farmers’ valuation of transgenic biofortified sorghum for nutritional improvement in Burkina Faso: A latent class approach

Obi Chinedu, Edouard Sanou, Juan Tur-Cardona, Fabio Bartolini, Godelieve Gheysen and Stijn Speelman

Food Policy, 2018, vol. 79, issue C, 132-140

Abstract: Micronutrient malnutrition has been a challenge in Burkina Faso for many years, where it has led to worsening food security situation. Vitamin, iron and zinc deficiencies affects 1 in 4 persons in the country and is responsible for early child nutritional disorder. The high prevalence of micronutrient malnutrition may be attributed to the dominant role in the diet of local sorghum varieties, deficient in essential micronutrients. To address this issue Africa Harvest is developing a biofortified sorghum variety. However the success of this innovation with farmers will depend on numerous factors such as product attributes, previous experience and socioeconomic factors. In this study, we applied a choice experiment to investigate the farmers’ valuation of various sorghum seed attributes as well as to identify the factors that influence the farmers valuation. Our results show that there is a market for transgenic biofortified food in the country and thus that it could be a veritable instrument for reducing micronutrient malnutrition problems. We found that farmers are willing to pay more for biofortified sorghum, particularly if it also scores better on other attributes than the local varieties. Furthermore, we showed that those that have experience with the first-generation genetic modified crop (Bt cotton), are more likely to adopt the second-generation crop (biofortified sorghum). Given the importance of the other attributes and the heterogeneous preferences it is key to involve farmers in the development of the new product.

Keywords: Farmers; Transgenic biofortified sorghum; Micronutrient malnutrition; Choice experiment; Latent class model (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018
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Handle: RePEc:eee:jfpoli:v:79:y:2018:i:c:p:132-140