Factors affecting the adoption of productive pastures by participants in a paired-paddock extension program Academic Article uri icon

abstract

  • A survey of 146 pastoral producers across south-eastern Australia was conducted after they had participated for 3 years in the Grassland’s Productivity Program. The exit survey, together with earlier surveys, enabled the changes in whole-farm stocking rate and phosphorus fertiliser use, management practices, and perceptions of the Grassland’s Productivity Program, to be determined. The magnitude of the increases in productivity settings and the increased use of most recommended management practices were not influenced by either the facilitator who guided the groups of participants, or by the annual rainfall for the farm, which varied between 400 and 1000 mm. Path analysis of the survey data found that changes in productivity settings during 1993–97 did not depend on any one feature of the extension program. Rather the changes resulted from a hierarchy of interacting effects including certain initial (1993) and final (1997) management practices, attitudes to the program and perceived benefits from the program, and situational constraints such as the availability of suitable soil types on the farm. There were differences in the significant terms in the regression models that predicted the change in stocking rate, the change in fertiliser rate, or the combined variable for both, that was designated as the change index.

publication date

  • 2000