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This study was carried out with the aim of analyzing the marketing of red pepper (Capsicum annum) in Olamaboro local government area of Kogi state. Specific objectives of the study included describing the socio-economic characteristics of marketers in the study area, to identify the various marketing channels employed in the marketing of red pepper in the study area, to identify the various marketing costs incurred, to determine the marketing margin of red pepper marketing in the study area, to determine the marketing efficiency of red pepper marketing in the study area and enumerate various constraints faced by red pepper marketers in the study area. A two stage sampling technique was adopted in drawing the sample and 100 respondents were drawn. Data and information pertaining to the study was collected from respondents through structured questionnaire schedule and was analyzed by means of descriptive statistics, marketing margin analysis and marketing efficiency in light of the objectives of the study. The results showed that red pepper market was female dominated (62%) with mean marketing experience of 10 years which can conclude that pepper marketing in Olamaboro is gaining ground. Majority of wholesalers (60%) were within the age of 36-42 years while majority of retailers (38%) were within the active ages of 15-21. Marketing of red pepper in the area was profitable with average monthly marketing margin and net return of N2798 and N1737.31 on the side of the wholesalers and N2690 and N1723 on the side of the retailers, meaning that marketing of red pepper was efficient (1.64 > 1) on the side of the wholesalers and (1.78> 1) on the side of the retailers.. Major constraints of red pepper marketing in the area were storage related problems, transportation, government policies, security, language barrier, and activities of middlemen. The study showed that the marketing of red pepper in the study area negates the conventional marketing channels thus, improved storage facilities, good road network for ease of transportation and provision of security are imminent to sustain availability of red pepper and enhance its market
1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
Red Pepper (Capsicum annum) in Nigeria popularly called atarugu in Hausa, ose in igbo, ako in Igala and atain Yoruba is said to be the first spice to have been used by humans (Hill, Ashrafi, Reyes-Chin Wo S., Yao J, and Stoeffel, 2013). As spices they are usually aromatic and pungent (Achinewu, Aniena and Obomanu, 1995) and may be available in various forms such as ground, whole, dried or pre-ground dry (Olife, Onwalu, Uchegbu and Jolaoso 2013). Pepper is the second most important vegetable all over the world just after tomatoes and it is the most grown type of spice providing color and flavor to food while providing essential nutrient requirements at the same time (Bosland and Votava, 2000).
The distribution of pepper over time in Nigeria has helped in facilitating its availability to areas where it is not heavily produced. distribution Some of the major distribution channels of pepper in Nigeria follow the normal chain of from producers to the wholesalers, retailers and finally the consumers (Alawode and Abegunde, 2016).
Red Pepper is usually sold in the markets, marketing of red pepper in big cities of Nigeria is conducted through wholesale to retail markets but much is also sold in small street markets through more informal marketing channels which take place in vacant fields, along roadsides or on mats (Ugwu, 2016). In a typical vegetable market, retailers sell both tomato and onion at the same time in addition to other vegetables like hot pepper, sweet pepper, and in some cases, chilies pepper usually sold in heaps, small baskets and metal containers of varying weights (Aminu, 2009).Red pepper is handled for fresh consumption or processed into canned, pickled, frozen, fermented, dehydrated or extracted products (Bosland&Votava 2000).
Nigeria stands to be one of the major producers of Red pepper in the world accounting for about 50% of the total African production with major areas of production in Northern Nigeria (Business day, 2007). The high potential pepper producing areas of Nigeria include states such as Kaduna, Kano, Jigawa, Katsina, Sokoto, Plateau and Bauchi States (most of which lie within the derived savannah zone). According to Dipeolu and Akinbode (2008) the North supplies bulk of the pepper needs of the southern part where production is still small. However, it is the amount of the commodity that is available to the consumer that is important rather than its production. (Oghoghoet al, 2014)
Over the years to the best of my knowledge , there has not been any study on red pepper marketing in the department by an undergraduate student in view of this an attempt was made to carry out the research. This present work is a pioneer study.
1.2 PROBLEM STATEMENT
Red pepper marketing in Olamaboro Local Government is characterized by losses on the side of the marketers due to spoilage of the commodity while on the shed this is in accordance with Udegbe, Udegbe, Olumoko and Hassan (2012). Pepper is one of the most difficult crops to preserve because of this reason, they are very costly and often in bad state after a while on the shed. Their life span (Post-harvest) is very short and except they are dried, a great proportion of them end as waste. Also the length of chain of the participants in the marketing of the commodity is one that should be examined as it hinders marketing efficiency (Udegbeet al., 2012). The demand side of red pepper is highly characterized by sky rocketing prices of red pepper for the consumers, So far how and why the prices fluctuate is hardly investigated and it has not been deduced if this phenomenon is beneficial to the producers (Mekdes, Teshale, Getachew,2017).
According to Okunmadewa (2007), the difference between the prices people pay for commodity at the farm gates and the prices they pay for the same commodity in the market is increasing exponentially and calls for serious attention.
In this regard this study aims to answer questions such as;
1. What are the socio-economic characteristics of the marketers?
2. What are the various marketing channels employed in the marketing of the commodity?
3. What are the various marketing costs incurred
4. What is the marketing margin of pepper marketing in the study area?
5. What is the marketing efficiency of pepper marketing in the study area?
6. What are the various constraints experienced by pepper marketers in the study area?
1.3 OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
This study is aimed at investigating the marketing analysis of red pepper (capsicum annum) in Olamaboro Local Government Area. Specific objectives of the study include:
i. To describe the socio-economic characteristics of marketers in the study area
ii. To identify the various marketing channels employed in the marketing of red pepper in the study area
iii. To identify the various marketing costs incurred
iv. To determine the marketing margin of red pepper marketing in the study area
v. To determine the marketing efficiency of red pepper marketing in the study area
vi. Enumerate various constraints faced by red pepper marketers in the study area.
1.4 JUSTIFICATION OF THE STUDY
Few studies have been conducted on the analysis of red pepper marketing in Olamaboro Local Government Area. Efforts made by these few studies are in the areas of profitability which considers mostly the production of the commodity alone.
To the best of my knowledge there are still other areas such as analysis on the marketability of the commodity, marketing efficiency and Market Integration which could be helpful for guiding policy making on red pepper marketing. The findings from this research would be useful to other similar researchers and form the foundation for another research
1.5 SCOPE AND LIMITATION OF THE STUDY
This study intended to analyze red pepper marketing systems employed in Olamaboro Local Government Area in Kogi state. The study is limited to red pepper marketers only and excludes producers of the commodity because of the limited time frame required to conduct the study. Also this study was carried out for limited sizes of sample hence caution is required while generalizing the result of this study.
In terms of limitation time and lack of cooperation on the part of the respondents were the major constraint which was tackled by consulting a district head.
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