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The role of adult education in the adoption of innovations by cocoa growers in Ghana Opare, Kwadwo Dua

Abstract

This study was designed to analyse the adoption of recommended cocoa practices among cocoa growers in Ghana and to relate it to the correctness of their knowledge of principles underlying the recommended practices, the growers' sources of cocoa husbandry information, and selected personal and economic characteristics of the growers; and to examine the relationships discovered and to draw recommendations which will assist the Ghana Government in programmes to increase cocoa production. In. order to study these relationships, a personal interview, using a structured interview schedule, was employed to collect the data from a sample of 1,191 cocoa growers in Ghana. Statistically significant associations were found between the adoption of recommended cocoa practices and 1) the correctness of growers' knowledge of principles underlying a recommended cocoa practice; 2) adult education sources of information; and 3) individual grower's output of cocoa. The study indicated that although the possession of correct knowledge of or.i.nciples was crucial to the adoption of the innovations, the mere possession was not always sufficient motivation to effect adoption. An equally important factor was adult education sources of information. In addition, there was no indication that the adoption of recommended practices was more closely linked with correctness of knowledge than with adult education sources of information. Among the personal and economic characteristics studied, number of wives, number of children, advisory role and number of years engaged in cocoa growing were positively associated with adoption of recommended practices. Male growers were more apt to adopt innovations than female growers. Age was not related to adoption. Literacy was positively associated with adoption of recommended practices. The study shows that possession of correct knowledge of principles is crucial to adoption of recommended cocoa practices. Thus, access to formal instructional activities could contribute to the improved performance of cocoa growers in Ghana. An obvious mechanism for improvement is adult education for the growers.

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