The Impact of Farmers’ Health and Nutritional Status on Agricultural Technical Efficiency: Evidence from Masvingo Rural Communities

Simon Munongo, Chitungo K. Shallone

Abstract


Agricultural productivity is the cornerstone to increasing rural household welfare in Masvingo region (Munongo 2012). However the spread of diseases especially HIV and AIDS prevalence in the area threaten to reduce the gains the government of Zimbabwe had made in improving the rural livelihoods. This paper uses a structured questionnaire that had 123 respondents in Masvingo rural to investigate the efficiency effects of health status.  Data were collected on health status and production characteristics of the farmers and analyzed using the Maximum Likelihood Estimation Method of Stochastic Production Frontier model. The result of the effect of ill-health on technical efficiency of the farmers showed that land, labour, fertilizer and seed were positively related to output. In the inefficiency model, adverse health, age, household sizes have positive effects on inefficiency of the farmers.  It could be concluded that it is possible to increase productivity through improvement on the stock of health status of the farmers.

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