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Farming system diversity and its drivers in land reform farms of the Waterberg District, South Africa

A.J. Netshipale, E.N. Raidimi, M.L. Mashiloane, I.J.M. de Boer and S.J. Oosting

Land Use Policy, 2022, vol. 117, issue C

Abstract: South Africa implemented land reform for the past two decades to contribute to addressing challenges posed by inequality, poverty and unemployment. Systematic classification of farming system types in land reform is lacking, and distinguishing the types with common characteristics (e.g. farm size, land use activities and livelihood strategies) is essential for implementing targeted agricultural development. In addition, understanding the drivers that lead to different farming system types might contribute to policy making and design of well-suited management options. We investigated 50 land reform farms in the Waterberg District, South Africa. We used principal component analysis (PCA) and two-step cluster analysis to assess the diversity of farming system types and factors driving such diversity. Indicators characterising the ruminant, monogastric, horticulture and crop farming, land use, and economic importance were collected to assess the target-farms and included in the PCA. Four farming system types were distinguished: crop plus ruminants- CR, horticulture- H, ruminants- R, and monogastric- M. The presence of type CR and R was driven by land reform policies which transferred farms of large sizes (± 1160 ha) for extensive resource use, in cognisance of the semi-arid conditions of the study area. Land reform policies drove the presence of the type H and M by targeting capital endowed farmers and areas with potential for horticulture, and by ensuring that farmers are physical capital endowed. Capital endowed farmers were in all four identified farming system types, be that as it may, limited external physical and financial capital support restricted capital poor farmers to type CR and M.

Keywords: Farming systems; Typology; Land reform; Land use activities; Multivariate analysis (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2022
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DOI: 10.1016/j.landusepol.2022.106116

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