Annually, rural farmers in the Caprivi region are faced with making difficult choices of whether or not to cultivate their crop fields. The choice farmers make is influenced by the presence of wild animals, climate risk factors, and prospects of future food aid-rollouts. This study investigates key identified determinants to rural farmers’ decisions to cultivate their crop fields amidst the three mentioned influencers. Using a structured questionnaire, 253 respondents were interviewed on a face to face basis. Random sampling was used in selecting the respondents. The respondents resided in the flood plains where they had access to food aid for a period of 5 years. The central livelihood strategy for the respondents is agriculture. A logistics model was used to analyze the data. The results revealed that the household food bill, age of the head of the household, and the value and availability of food aid were essential determinants of a rural farmer’s decision to cultivate his/her crop field. It also came out that rolling out food aid to rural farmers for a period of ≤ 5 years has little effect on their crop production commitments. A longer period may become a disincentive to crop farming in favor of food aid.
Key words: Livelihoods, climate risk, old age pension, food aid.
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