ANALYSIS OF PRODUCTION PERFORMANCE AND PROFITABILITY OF PIG FARMS IN ENUGU STATE, NIGERIA
This study was carried out to analyse the production performance and profitability of pig farms in Enugu State. Eight research questions and five hypotheses were formulated based on the specific purpose of the study. Survey design was adopted for the study. The study covered the registered pig farms in the study area. The population for the study was 519 respondents comprising 162 registered rural pig farmers, 135 registered urban pig farmers and 222 agricultural extension agents in Enugu State. The entire population was used as sample. The instrument for data collection was validated and its reliability determined. Data were collected using structured questionnaire supported with pig performance recording sheets, and available farm records. The data collected were analysed using percentages and frequency counts, mean and standard deviation were used to answer the research questions while Analysis of Variance (ANOVA), Duncan’s test and t-test statistic were used in testing the hypotheses at 0.05 level of significance. The most popular breed of pig in the study area was Large White. Other breeds of pig kept by farmers include Duroc Jersey, West African Dwarf pig, Land Race and Hampshire. It was also found out that farmers adopted most of the pig production technologies except such technologies that require high level skills like castration, artificial insemination and telemarketing or video merchandising. It was found that pig production business was highly profitable in the study area with mean profit margin of N3, 689, 267.98 per farm per year. The productivity constraints and strategies for improving physical productivity and profitability of pig farms were ascertained. There were significant differences among breeds of pig in mean birth weights, weaning weights and adult weights. There was no significant difference between the mean ratings of urban and rural rpig farmers on pig production technologies adopted by farmers in most of the items presented to the pig farmers. There was no significant difference between the mean ratings of urban and rural pig farmers on the productivity constraints of pig farms in most of the items presented to the pig farmers. There was significant difference between the mean ratings of pig farmers and agricultural extension agents on the strategies for improving profitability of pig farms in most of the items presented to both groups. It was therefore, recommended that pig farmers should always endeavour to select and keep improved, exotic breeds of pigs such as Large White in their farms due to their high production performance. All stakeholders in pig production should join hands in reducing the productivity constraints of pig farms by providing human and material resources to increase productivity. Furthermore, livestock farmers and new investors should be encouraged and motivated to establish pig farms in the state as the business was found to be highly profitable.