Cocoyam Marketing In South East Nigeria

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Cocoyam is highly perishable and considerable economic losses occur after it is harvested.
This is as a result of rot, sprouting and other physiological changes. These losses could be
reduced through efficient storage, processing and marketing. This study is about economic
study of cocoyam marketing in south-east Nigeria. It specifically ranked market participants
preference for cocoyam cultivars and the reasons for such preferences. It showed the main
marketing channels and socio-economic and institutional factors affecting the choice of
marketing channels.

It showed the structure and conduct of cocoyam marketing and socioeconomic
and institutional factors affecting the volume of cocoyam marketed. It estimated
the costs and benefits of cocoyam marketing as well as the net income of six storage
methods. It assessed the effectiveness of six storage methods. The study was guided by null
hypotheses that socio-economic and institutional factors did not determine the choice of
marketing channels; that socio-economic and institutional factors did not determine volume
of cocoyam marketed; that the mean income of farmers, wholesalers and retailers did not
significantly differ and that the mean cocoyam rot of the six storage methods did not
significantly differ. A total of 260 marketers comprising 100 producers, 60 wholesalers and
100 retailers were selected through stratified random sampling techniques. Data were
collected from both primary sources. Primary data emanated from various questionnaires and
weekly/monthly monitoring of the six storage methods. Descriptive statistics such as tables,
charts, percentages and mean and inferential statistics such net income analysis, four firm
concentration ratios, Herfindahl-Hirschman Index and Gini-Coefficient, Multinomial logit
regression model, correlation analysis, Ordinary least square regression model and Analysis
Variance were used to achieve the objectives. The results showed that producers,
wholesalers and retailers preferences for cocoyam cultivars depended on culture and food
pattern more than anything else. It also showed that four firm concentration ratios and
Herfindahl-Hirschman Index did not indicate oligopolistic behavior although their Ginicoefficient
showed unequal distribution of market sale. The average net income of producers,
wholesalers and retailers per year were ₦204,246, ₦3,650,000 and ₦474,000 each
respectively while the net income of the six storage methods were ₦56.92, ₦47.96, ₦47.80,
₦43.36, ₦15.25 and ₦3.00 per kg respectively. Approximately 33% of the variations in the
volume of cocoyam marketed were explained by socio-economic and institutional variables.

The multinomial logit regression analysis has R2 value of 0.56 and showed that age and
storage cost were significant (P < 5%).The correlation results for objectives iii and vi showed
that distance to market, family labour, size of land allocated to cocoyam income from other
sources and purpose of marketing were significant at (p < 0.001) and thus contribute to
improvement in marketing. The Analysis of Variance (ANOVA) showed statistically
significant difference (P < 0.01) in the mean income of farmers, wholesalers and retailers as
well as the mean disease severity of the six storage methods. So, the first, second, third and
fourth hypotheses were rejected, while the alternatives were accepted. The study therefore,
recommended that government should build the capacity of market participants through
seminars. Additionally financial/technical support should be provided especially to the
commercial farmers. There is also need for agricultural-chain partnership between the
farmers and processors.

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