Assessment of the Adoption of Improved Tef (Eragrostis tef) Practices and factors impacting on Yield in Four Regions of Ethiopia*Corresponding Author:
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Tef is the main Ethiopian cereal crop cultivated over 3.02 million hectare of land, which is equivalent to 23.85% of the total area allocated to cereals in the country (CSA, 2018). It is a staple food for over 73 million Ethiopians providing good nutrition and gluten free for the consumers. Technology adoption is the only means to increase production and productivity of the crop. Therefore, this study aims to assess the adoption of improved tef practices impacting on yield and factors affecting the adoption of the practice in four regions of Ethiopia. Household survey and crop cut survey were used. Four districts, 101 each in Amhara, SNNP Tigray and 100 farmers in Oromia regions of Ethiopia were assessed in the study. Therefore, a total of 403 respondent farmers, were used. Data were analysed using SSPS. Among the seven improved practices assessed, fertilizer application, variety selection and use, land preparation and herbicide application showed higher adoption among the farmers. The correlation analysis results revealed that yield is positively and significantly correlated with land preparation (r=0.492), row planting (r=0.351) hand weeding (0.306), fertilizer application (r=0.143).This implies that the adoptions of these improved practices were contributing to yield increment. The result clearly indicated that the adoption of improved practices was influenced by a composite of demographic, socio economic and institutional factors. Partial budget analysis was employed using previous variable cost data collected in Ada district by Debre Zeit Agricultural Research Centre. The result revealed that the highest increased income showed in Lume districts (positive net change in benefits) 37431.2 birr ha-1 followed by Siyadebirenawayu districts which was 31131.73 birr ha-1. However, the increase income in Lemo and Lalye maychew were minima l9513.34 birr ha-1 and 11469.95 birr ha-1 respectively. The benefit cost ratio for Lume and Siyadebir enawayu districts were 3.9 and 3.3. However, benefit cost ratio for Lemo and Lalye Machew were 1.7 and 1.9 The variables significantly affect the adoption of tef improved practices by farmers are age, education level, family size, farm size, extension service provision. To solve problems of inadequate use of improved practices, Development Agents and Agricultural experts should provide farmers with more practical trainings under farmers’ direct participation in the demonstration centres. In order to attain food security, the nation policy makers should devise more effective farmers’ training mechanisms and provide more applicable tef production mechanizations effective on the process of tef production.