Journal of
Development and Agricultural Economics

  • Abbreviation: J. Dev. Agric. Econ.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2006-9774
  • DOI: 10.5897/JDAE
  • Start Year: 2009
  • Published Articles: 553

Full Length Research Paper

Off-farm participation decision and its impact on crop yield in Northern Ethiopia

Berihun Kassa
  • Berihun Kassa
  • College of Social Sciences and Humanities, Samara University, P. O. Box 132, Samara, Ethiopia.
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Bihon Kassa
  • Bihon Kassa
  • College of Business and Economics, Mekelle University, P. O. Box 450, Mekelle, Ethiopia.
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Kibrom Aregawi
  • Kibrom Aregawi
  • College of Business and Economics, Mekelle University, P. O. Box 450, Mekelle, Ethiopia.
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  •  Received: 13 July 2016
  •  Accepted: 15 November 2016
  •  Published: 28 February 2017


One of the most important facets of off-farm activities is providing employment opportunities and additional income for rural households and thereby accommodates the seasonal and fluctuating agricultural production. Given this, identifying the underlying determinants of off-farm participation and its impact on crop yield was found to be of the essence. Cross sectional data was collected through structured questionnaire administered on 384 randomly selected farmers. Descriptive statistics, probit and Ordinary Least Square (OLS) models as well as t and chi-square tests were used to analyze the data. The regression result revealed that off-farm participation was positively influenced by gender, education, working people, number of pack animals and credit access; while age and land size carried a negative sign. Off-farm participation was also found to have a negative and statistically significant impact on crop yield where non-participants were better producers; since majority of off-farm participants participate only on food-for-work which has nothing to add for crop yield rather than compromising farm activities. Hence, training on non-farm activities need to be given; the current adult education, being propagating, need to be strengthened; and there is a need to solve liquidity problem through credit access that could serve as startup capital.


Key words: Off-farm, participation, smallholder farmers, probit, Ordinary Least Square (OLS).