Farmers' motivations, risk perceptions and risk management strategies in a developing economy: Bangladesh experience
Dewan Ahsan ()
Journal of Risk Research, 2011, vol. 14, issue 3, 325-349
Aquaculture farmers' risk perceptions and risk management strategies have still received little attention in agricultural research. Therefore, an exploratory study has been undertaken to provide empirical insight into Bangladeshi coastal shrimp farmers' risk perceptions and risk management responses. Data from our study show that 95% of farmers have no formal training in shrimp aquaculture. Shrimp farmers' cooperative societies operate in only 13.3% of the studied areas and only 15% of shrimp farmers are involved with these cooperative societies. The results reveal that shrimp diseases, price and availability of quality shrimp seeds, exploitation by intermediaries and uncertainty about the future demand for shrimp in foreign markets are perceived as the most important sources of risk. On the other hand, prevention of disease, timely supply of shrimp seeds, elimination of middlemen from the supply chain and farm management training are considered among the best methods to manage the risks in the shrimp-farming business. We also observe some disparities in farmers' perceptions. For instance, farmers mentioned that removal of influence of middlemen from supply chain is essential for the betterment of their business. However, they did not consider market monitoring, direct contract with processors and improved marketing facilities as important risk management strategies, although these factors play a significant role in reducing the influence of intermediaries and private money lenders.
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