Nigerian Journal of Rural Sociology (NJRS), 19( 1): 62 - 67 , 2019

Postharvest information needs among plantain marketers in Southwestern Nigeria

Olajide B. R., Olonibua O. O.


Paucity of adequate post-harvest handling information among marketers who handle most of the purchasing, storage, ripening and selling functions along the plantain value chain is largely responsible for high postharvest loss of plantain. .In order to bridge this gap, information need of marketers involved in the post-harvest handling of plantain in southwestern Nigeria was investigated in this study. Data on respondents? socioeconomic characteristics, source of information, postharvest handling practices, constraints to accessing information on the practices, and information need on improved practices were collected from 120 randomly selected plantain marketers. Data were analyzed using frequency counts, percentage, mean and Pearson Correlation. Findings reveal that most of the marketers were female (68.0%), married (64.0%) and 39.2% had secondary education. Friends (1.20) served as the major source of information for the marketers, while inadequate extension contact (47.5%) and poor access to information sources (42.5%) were the major constraints faced in accessing postharvest handling information. Marketing (63.3%), sorting (58.3%), transportation (50.0%) and processing (27.5%) were the postharvest handling practices marketers were engaged in. Post-harvest practices (r =3.64, p=0.00) engagement was significantly related to marketers? information need. Information on transportation, marketing and processing of plantain were respondents? main information need. Extension organisations as well as other media agencies that have responsibility for agricultural information dissemination should focus on these key areas.

Keywords: Information need, Postharvest practices, Plantain marketers