General Commission for Scientific Agricultural Research-
Faculty of Agriculture, Damascus University,
The study is conducted in the southern area (Deraa and Sweida) of Syria through a random stratus sample including 10% of the total villages and 10% of the selected farmers of the total sample size in the first and second agro-ecological zones. So the final sample size totaled 199 farmers during the season 2006-2007. The research intends to study the economic impact of adopting the improved varieties of durum wheat.
The main results have shown that the distinction of the improved varieties against the local ones by their economic returns. As the irrigated improved varieties totals 2473 SP per dunum and the rainfed improved varieties returns 828 SP per dunum, while the local varieties returns were only 370 SP per dunum.
The rate of adoption of improved varieties of durum wheat consists of about 78.9% of the total cultivated varieties in the area. Sham 3 has the highest adoption rate, extent of adopt and density compared with other varieties cultivated in the southern area (50%), (53.57%), (26.79%) respectively, followed by Sham 5 which has the second adopting rate, extent and density of adoption (26.35%), (29.49%), (7.77 %) respectively, followed by Douma1 (4.55%), (11.36%), (0.525%) respectively.
According to the logistic nonlinear regression function of (S) curve shape, the maximum rate of expected adoption up to year 2025 is about 90%. However, about 36.25% of the non-adopting households deem that the improved varieties arent drought tolerance if compared with the local varieties, and that’s the main reason beyond their non-adoption. Another share of the non-adopting households (25%) think that no difference in productivity between the improved and the local varieties. While the rest of households feel that the improved varieties require more agricultural services, in addition to the fact that they do not have enough experience to cultivate them. On the other hand, local varieties are available and more accessible.
The results also shown that a significant negative relationships between the adoption behavior and each of the following dependant variables: costs of machinery, farmers age, and years of experience. A significant positive relationship between the adoption behavior and each of the following dependant variables: irrigated and rainfed agricultural rotation, amount of seed used, cereals yield, straw yield, cultivated area of durum wheat, total income, farm income, income generated from durum wheat, the level of farmers education, the psychiatric factors such as; willing to take initiatives, willing to gain knowledge, to take risk, ownership of a telephone, having access to information technology about the improved varieties through communication with neighborhoods or through the research institutes, or through participating in the extension unit’s field days and extension publications, cooperatives, or even through the radio & TV extension programs.
The sample in the southern area claim that they suffer from various problems: most of them refer to climate instability (94.5% of the sample), high seed prices (60.8% of the sample), besides the low prices of selling products, limited number of workers, high rates of fertilizers prices, in addition to the difficult living conditions and lack of financial capital (59.8 %), (62.3 %), (47.2 %), (41.2 %), and (40.2%) respectively.