Mapping smallholder irrigation schemes utilizing GIS technology for improving livelihoods among farmers in the North West Province, South Africa

Author: Lobina Palamuleni, Sibongile S. Tekana and Oladimeji I. Oladele
Received 15 July 2013, accepted 22 October 2013.
This paper reports on a study conducted in the North West Province, South Africa, to map small-scale irrigation farms using GIS technology. Farming in the region is challenged by arid conditions characterized by very limited water resource due to high evaporation and erratic rainfall. However, cultivation of crops requires large amount of irrigation water to ensure high yield. Information on the irrigation type, access to water, GPS coordinate, type of vegetables grown (carrots, spinach, beetroot etc), number of farmers (beneficiaries), total annual production, and distance to market were mapped to evaluate the potential transferable risks and the importance of maintaining proximity between farmers and consumers of the fresh produce. It was found that distances between farms and markets ranged from 60 to 265 km where most of the farms are not located on or very close to main roads. Most significant was that the farms have a preferred cash crop, which can lift poor farmers out of poverty.
Journal: Food, Agriculture and Environment (JFAE)
Online ISSN: 1459-0263Year: 2013, Vol. 11, Issue 3&4, pages 1281-1285.Publisher: WFL.

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