1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
In developing countries as in the case of Nigeria, Agriculture dominates the nation’s economy. It has been established that about 70 percent of Nigeria population is engaged in Agriculture (Obasi and Agu, 2000) while 90 percent of Nigeria total food production comes from small farms and 60 percent of the country population earn their living from these small farms (Oluwatayo et al, 2008).
The recent importation of food items into the country to make up for the shortfalls in food supply is a dangerous indication of dwindling farm productivity and a warning sign that if the nation continue with business as usual, the prospect of food security will be bleak for millions of people (Nweze, 2003). The fall in agricultural production could be attributed to inadequate infrastructure, under mechanisation and inadequate finance (Oshiokoya, 1987). According to Ojo (1998), one problem confronting small scale enterprise including that in agriculture is inadequate capital. The word co-operative can have different interpretation. In a layman’s language, it means working together on working mutually. The second interpretation , which is where the emphasis means a special type of co-operative. The co-operative has been defined by different schools of thought but the various in the degree of emphasis on one aspect or the other.
The school of thought describes co-operative as business undertaking owned and operated by voluntary associations in order to provide themselves with work and wages or with goods and services. But the International Co-operative Alliance (I C A) defined co-operative as an autonomous association of persons, limited voluntarily to meet their common economic, social and cultural needs aspirations through a jointly owned and democratically controlled enterprises. The role of co-operative in agricultural is an important topic of study but already much has been done by co-operators to justify its prime role of score securing economic and political development particularly in developed countries like England known for consumer co-operatives. France known for industrial co-operative and Germany known for credit co-operative. Co-operative movement is world wide phenomenon. It has developed from simple traditional form(s) of mutual institution of modern formally organized institution. This institution gained world wide acceptance because of the grate role. It has been playing in the economic development of various countries particularly in the developing countries. The improvement of agricultural production through co-operative inevitable has social effects. Co-operative management bring better yield which in turn yields better living standard, better housing, better education for members and their families. This economic success of co-operative society has been witnessed invaluably in co-operative studies.
In Enugu State, most inhabitants survive through and the main occupation is substantial farming, which attracted interest many co-operative societies, both existing ones and new initiated ones. Improving the agricultural production was their main target and interest and at the same time lifting the level of its individuals. Improvement target was both in size and qualities were poor and could not be marketed most of the crops having pest scales and most couldn’t grow well in other to produce as expected. The product that were severely affected were yam tubers, cassava stems and tubers, cocoa yams, vegetables etc.
1.2 STATEMENT OF PROBLEM
The following problems led to the formation of this research work;
1. The low productivity of Agricultural produce in Nigeria.
2. Poor condition of tool/machines used by farmers in Nigeria and Enugu East local government area in particular.
3. Government attitude towards farmers in Enugu East local government area.
4. Poor attitude of NGOs and financial institutions towards farmers in Enugu east local Government Area of Enugu state.
1.3 OBJECTIVE OF THE STUDY
The general purpose of this project work is Increasing Agricultural Output Through The Activities Of Cooperative Societies In Enugu State (A Case Study Of Selected Agricultural Cooperative Societies In Enugu East Local Government Area of Enugu State).
Finally, the study has the following specific objectives:
(a) To determine demographic variable of the in the society.
(b) To examine the effect cooperative societies on Agricultural productivity in Enugu East LGA.
(c) To investigate the problems facing cooperative societies in Enugu East LGA of Enugu state.
(d) To investigate the problems facing cooperative societies in Enugu local government area of Enugu state.
(e) To suggest pragmatic ways and means for enhancing the effectiveness of these cooperative societies in the area.
1.4 Significance of the study
This research work will be of immense help to:
¨ The researcher: It will help the researcher to know more on Increasing Agricultural Output Through The Activities Of Cooperative Societies In Enugu State with particular reference to Selected Agricultural Cooperative Societies In Enugu East LGA Enugu State.
¨ Cooperative societies: It will also be of great importance to cooperative societies in the area of increasing Agricultural products through cooperatives.
¨ Small Scale industries: This research work will equally be of immense help to the small scale industries in Enugu East Local government Area of Enugu state as it will serve as an eye opener on the relevant of cooperatives societies.
This study will be of great importance to the country Nigeria as it will help the policy makers to politicize laws that will guide co-operative society in the country as it will help in the development of the development of country.
1.5 Scope And Limitation Of The Study
This study will attempt to Increasing Agricultural Output Through The Activities Of Cooperative Societies in Enugu State (A Case Study Of Selected Agricultural Cooperative Societies In Enugu East LGA Enugu State). The following constraints faced by the researcher and limited his efforts in elaborating the research work.
FINANCE: The researcher is a full time student and has been discouraged from traveling to or visiting all Enugu East Local Government Area and its Environs to collect data for her study due to lack of fund, She has therefore chosen very few households because of proximity and ease of contact to the community.
TIME: This project work has just few months time. It would have been desired for a longer time to exhaust the topic and extend the coverage but it was not possible. A minimum of six months could have been appreciated.
PRESSURE OF ACADEMIC WORK: The researcher have been hindered by pressure of academic work from achieving the extensive research this work should have deserved.
1.6 Definition Of Terms
1. Agricultural output: According to Iwena (2012:1) Agricultural output simply means the deliberate effort made by man to fill the soil cultivate crops and rear animals for foods and other purpose and the quality of crops produce.
2. Agricultural Productivity: The index of the ratio of the value of the total form output to the value of the total input used in farm production.
3. Co-operative Society: Is a group of people who voluntarily come together to form an association with the aim of promoting a common economic interest (Eze and Ijerma 2007).
4. Co-operative Society: Is an association of persons who voluntarily join together to solve their common economic needs through self-help (Okonkwo 1989).
5. Co-operative Society: Is an autonomous association of persons united voluntarily to meet their common economic, social and cultural need and aspirations through a jointly owned and democratically controlled venture.