Exploring Fruit Market Potential of Tigray, Northern Ethiopia
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To improve the livelihood of farmers, different agricultural interventions have been done under federal and regional Governments. The current government has given more emphasis on improving agricultural productivity in the past decades by supplying new agricultural inputs and technologies, new agricultural system and extension services thereby improve the livelihood of farmers and to increase the GDP of the country. Under the sub sector of agricultural activities, horticulture contributes a significant amount to the livelihood of farmers. This research is conducted on fruit market potentials of Tigray region with the objectives of identifying the potentials of fruit for market and identifying major problems and opportunities in fruit production and marketing, identifying the major type of fruits that are produced in Tigray, to assess the fruit market channel in the region and to assess the income contribution of fruit at household economy. To accomplish this study both primary and secondary sources of data were used. Primary data were collected from sample farmer respondents using structured questionnaire. The farmers (producers) sampled in this study were those who are engaged in fruit production and marketing. A total of 274 samples were selected in these sample districts. Data analysis was carried out using descriptive statistics and econometric model. As the result of the descriptive statistics revealed that among the total sample 42.34%, 41.30% and 10.6% of respondents have an experience on fruit growing 1 to 5 years 6 to 10 years and 11 to 15years respectively. The remaining 4.1 and 1.5 % of the respondents have an experience of 16 to 20 and more than 20 years. In regard to fruit production and marketing poetical of the producer the result shows that out of the total sample producers, 183 (65.6 %) of them produce orange an average fruit amount of 460.9kg and 129 (47.1%) and 125 (45.62%) Produce Guava and Banana with the amount of 407.4kg and 221 kg respectively. Furthermore, of the total sample 16 (5.8%) sample respondents produce apple an average amount of 66.7 kg. From the total amount of fruit production farmers supply to the market is 85%.The result also revelled that 37.38% of the average household income is from fruits. Therefore, as fruit contributes more in the households’ livelihood, improving the quality and, productivity and the market situations are among the important intervention areas by the development agents and other partners.