Money matters for subsistence farmers: Provision of a low-rate credit scheme by a local bank allowed mungbean farmers to adopt improved cultivation practices

F. L. Benu and I. W. Mudita

Net Journal of Agricultural Science
Published: June 14 2017
Volume 5, Issue 2
Pages 71-78


Small-scale subsistence farming characterised by production used mainly for household consumption dominates agricultural landscapes of Eastern Indonesia, including those in East Nusa Tenggara Province. The central and local governments have strived to modernise this agricultural practice through various programmes of agricultural intensification, but the efforts are so far not yet so successful. This research was carried out using an alternative approach, instead of just introducing improved technology packages as mostly done so far. The results indicated that through collaboration with international, national, and local institutions, mungbean production can be improved from less than to more than 1 tonne/ha allowing the participating households to generate a profitability of about USD 700/ha. What is more striking, the participating households sold on an average of 74.5% of their mungbean yield for cash, indicating that bringing access to credit close to farmers may trigger a shift to more commercial farming practices.

Keywords: Subsistence farming, improved cultivation practices, technology packages, access to credit.

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