Effects of Insect Pest Management on Profitability of Eggplant Production in Owo Local Government Area, Ondo State, Nigeria  

Ilemobayo Olufunke O.1 , Adesina Jacobs M.2 , Ojumu Segun1
1. Department of Agricultural Extension and Management, Rufus Giwa Polytechnic, P. M. B. 1019, Owo, Ondo State, Nigeria
2. Departments of Crop, Soil and Pest Management Technology, Rufus Giwa Polytechnic, P. M. B. 1019, Owo, Ondo State, Nigeria
Author    Correspondence author
International Journal of Horticulture, 2014, Vol. 4, No. 4   doi: 10.5376/ijh.2014.04.0004
Received: 07 Feb., 2014    Accepted: 18 Feb., 2014    Published: 21 Feb., 2014
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This is an open access article published under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Preferred citation for this article:
Ilemobayo et al., 2014, Effects of Insect Pest Management on Profitability of Eggplant Production in Owo Local Government Area, Ondo State, Nigeria, International Journal of Horticulture, 2014, Vol.4, No.4 16-19 (doi: 10.5376/ijh.2014.04.0004)


This study examines the profitability of eggplant under insect pest management in Owo local government area, Ondo State. Data used for the study was obtained using structured questionnaire administered to 80 randomly selected eggplant farmers in the study area. Descriptive statistics and budgetary analysis was used to estimate socio economic characteristics and the profitability of the respondents. Results showed that 72% of the farmers were male, and the average age of between 31~50 years constitute 61%, with little or no formal education and 60% having family size of 4 children and above. The study also revealed that majority of the farmers intercropped eggplant with yam and cocoyam, it was also discovered that 92% of the farmers indicated that there is pest infestation and 67.5% have experience above 5 years. The budgetary analysis showed a positive gross margin indicating eggplant production is profitable in the two categories of producers, though those with pesticides recorded higher yield vis-à-vis return on investment with a average gross margin of N12, 266/ ha and N5,125/ ha respectively in the study area.

Eggplant; Production; Insect pest management; Profitability; Budgetary; Gross margin

Eggplant, (Solanum spp.) is one of the most important vegetables crop in Nigeria and other West African nations. It is an indigenous tropical African crop grown in Nigeria for its nutritional, medicinal and economic values of the leaves and fruits, with various varieties of economic importance commonly produced in Nigeria. Onuoha (2005); Okafor (1993) and Maraizu (2007) stated that eggplant contains a lot of mineral, vitamins, carbohydrate and water substances which are important and highly beneficial for the maintenance of health and prevention of diseases. Chadha and Oluocha (2003) reported that eggplant as a vegetable has been affirmed to be recommended to tackle malnutrition problem in Africa, especially among women of childbearing age and children under 5 years of age.  Eggplant fruits could be consumed raw as snacks by both adult and children. The fruits have some biter species like Solanum melengena are cooked and used in the preparation of sauces for cocoyam and yam (Onwuka, 2005). In Southeastern Nigeria, the fruits of eggplant (Solanum gilo) are served alongside with kola nuts (Cola accumilata) in both big and small ceremonies such as marriages, festivals, traditional title taking, meeting and others (Okafor, 1993). In most Igboland, eggplant is sliced and mixed with Tapioca in the preparation of special native salad or dishes (Nwaorie and Agbaravoh, 2002). Not only is this crop consume on an daily basis by rural and urban families but it also represent the main source of income for many rural household in the forest zone of the country and its cultivation is not limited to any age or sex (Anuebunwa, 2007). Fruit yield in eggplant is dependent on a number of factors which include flowering (anthesis), pests and diseases infection, soil nutrient status (soil fertility) and the course of fertilizer application (Huth and Pellmyr, 1977). Akinpelu and Ogbonna (2005) identified some of the constraints in the production of eggplant; as high input cost, particularly labour, planting materials, transports and agro-chemicals by farmers. Several other researchers like Onuoha (2005) and Marizu (2007) reported that eggplant is faced with a lot of challenges which include pest and disease and distribution of the produce to areas of needs. Pests and diseases affect the crop by reducing total production as well as product quality. The shoot and fruit borer (SFB, Leucinodes orbonalis) is one of the main pest problems. SFB is widely distributed across all areas in Nigeria that produces eggplant. The damage caused by this pest affects the price significantly in local markets. Ramatu et al (2007) reported that yield losses from SFB could be as high as 21%. Still, the vegetable sells in its damaged state at a discounted price, but this pest, if not controlled, can always reduce productivity and the chances of having net returns below zero. Despite all the research work on eggplant production, what have not been established or known is the profitability of eggplant under insect pest management in Ondo State, Nigeria. Considering the importance of the eggplant as a cherished delicacy, snacks and vegetable in livelihood of farm households in the study area, Ondo State, it is therefore, expedient to examine the profitability of the crop in the state. Therefore, the broad objective of the study is to determine the profitability of eggplant under insect pest managements in the study area.

Result and Discussion
Table 1 above present the socio economic characteristic of the respondents. The age distribution shows that the age of the respondents range between 15~70 years. The majority of the farmers however fall between 31~50 years age group consisting 61% of the total respondents. This shows that the farmers are in active age. Result also showed that 60% of the farmers in the area have primary education while 17.5 have no formal education. The study also revealed that 72.50% of the respondents were male while 27.50 were female. Family size revealed that 40 percent have small family size, 18% have 4~6 children while 15% have above 7 children. The experience on production revealed that 67.50% of the respondents have more than 5 years while 32.50% have less than 4 years experience. Also majority (92, 50%) of the farmers intercropped eggplant with yam and cocoyam in the study area.

Table 1 Socio-economic characteristics of eggplant farmers

The result in table 2 above shows that the variable costs include costs of labour, planting materials (seedlings) and cost of chemical (pesticide) used. The analysis revealed that labour accounted for the highest proportion of the total variable cost. The total variable cost per hectare (with pesticide) was N12, 466.00, while the total revenue is N26,000.00, while the total variable cost (without pesticide) was N7,466.00 and total revenue is N11,472.00 respectively. A gross margin of N13,534.00 / ha was realized with pesticide while N5,125.00 was realized without pesticide. The study therefore revealed that in both enterprises a positive gross margin was realized indicating profitability although enterprise with the use of pesticide recorded higher yield and gross margin than those without.  The study also showed that because majority of farmer intercropped eggplant with yam and or cocoyam, the cost of labour was shared among the enterprises and this reduces the labour cost employed.

Table 2 Profitability analysis

Conclusion and Recommendations 
The study showed that eggplant production is profitable under the use of pesticide as it increases the yield, net return and revenue of the farmers in the study area. The study also revealed that most critical problems facing the farmers include pest which diminishes the quantity and quality of produce and inadequate capital to buy chemicals (pesticides). These constraints need to be relaxed in order to achieve appreciable increase in eggplant production in the area. Therefore to ensure improvement in eggplant production the following issues are recommended; improving the quality of eggplant through investment in eggplant research to generate improved varieties from local genetic resources; farmers should be assisted with credit facilities, this is necessary because it is a means of increasing their productivity, farmers should have more access to extension services in order to improve their knowledge on farm management and the importance of belonging to co-operative society to improve their production, also farmers should be introduced to formal education through adult literacy and establishment of demonstration farms.

The study was carried out in Owo Local Government Area, Ondo State. The local government  is bounded in the North by Akure North Local Government, east and west by Ose Local Government, south by Akoko south west Local Government.The Geographical location of the local government falls within the tropical rainforests of about 1,500mm rainfall per annum, with good rate of sunshine. The rainfall distribution is usually from April through October annually, which makes it suitable for arable crops farming. A purposive sampling technique was used for the study, in selecting four (4) villages where eggplant is grown. These villages include; Emure, Isuada, Ago- panu, Obasooto. From each of the villages, twenty (20) eggplant producers were randomly selected and interviewed with well structured questionnaire, giving a total of 80 respondents.

Method of Data Analysis
Descriptive statistical and quantitative methods were used to analyze the data collected. The descriptive statistics used were frequency distribution and tables, while budgetary analysis was used to determine the profitability of eggplant production. It provided information on farm input used cost and output prices and so on. Gross margin analysis was used to determine the profitability of farmer. The budgetary technique formulations:

GM= ∑ Pi q i – ∑ R j .X j

Where, GM=Farm Gross Margin; Pi=Unit prices of output I; Q i=Quantity of output I; RJ=price of variable input j; Xj=Quantity of the variable input j

Akinpelu A.O., and M.C. Ogbonna, 2005, Economics of eggplant (salanium spp) “Ngwa large” production in South East Agro-ecological zone of Nigeria. Proceedings of the 30th Conference of the Agricultural society of Nigeria, Benin, October 9-13, Pp. 143–145

Anuebunwa F.D., 2007, Structural Characteristics of the Marketed Fresh Okro in Ebonyi State of Nigeria. Proceedings of the 34th Conference of the Agricultural Society of Nigeria, Samaru 22-26th October. Pp. 489-492

Huth C.J., and Pellmyer D., 1977, Nutrient requirements of solanaceous vegetable crops, Indian Journal of Agricultural Sciences 58: 668-672

Okafor J.C., 1993, Horticulturally Promising Indigenous Wild Plant Species of Nigeria Forest Zone, Journal of Agriculture. 12(7): 165-176

Onunka B.N., 2005, A Survey on the Adoption of Sweet Potato (Ipomoea batatas) Production Technologies in Abia State. M.Sc. Desertation of Department of Agricultural Economics and Extension, Abia State University, Uturu, Nigeria. Pp. 10-34

Onuoha A.I., 2005, Economics of Resource Use Among Small-Scale Eggplant Farmers in Isiala-Ngwa North Local Government Area of Abia State, Nigeria, Journal of Agricultural and Rural Development, 8(2): 36-43

Onwuka G.I., 2005, Food Analysis and Instrumentation. Theory and Practices, Food Science Journal, 8(5): 3-35

Maraizu J.O., 2007, The Control of Fusarium Wilt of Eggplant Caused by Fusarium oxysporum F-sp melongena in Parts of Isiala-Ngwa Area of Abia State. M.Sc. Thesis of Department of Plant Health Management, Michael Okpara University of Agriculture, Umudike, Umuahia, Abia State, Nigeria. Pp. 21-30

Nwaorie H.E., and P.C. Agbaraevoh, 2002, African Eggplant Production in South Eastern Nigeria, Horticultural Society of Nigeria, 12(1): 254-258

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