Volume 3, Number 2 (2018) pp 81-87 doi 10.20448/803.3.2.81.87 | Research Articles
Inefficient potato seed system in multiplication and distribution has been one of the major challenge facing potato production in Malawi. As a result, small farmers recycle traditional potato varieties that attracts many problems at the market. Government of Malawi and International Potato Center introduced new potato varieties in 2012-2013 winter season with the hope to improve the problem. However there a need to evaluate farmer’s preference and analyses seed demand in order to coordinate multiplication and distribution of these potato varieties. Thus, the study carried out sensitivity analysis on changes in seed demand with the changes in output and input prices using a derived demand function. The second objective was to assess which of the improved potato variety, small farmers prefer. Cross sectional data was collected on an aggregated total of 168 potato small farmers in 2016 in Dedza and Ntcheu districts. Study results indicated that market price, output and labor cost were significant and positively contributing to farmer’s choice to produce improved potato varieties. On farmer’s seed preference, Chuma variety was more preferred followed by Mwai and Thandizo varieties.