IJSRP, Volume 7, Issue 12, December 2017 Edition [ISSN 2250-3153]
Mulugeta Tegegn, Akalu Dafisa
Globally, agriculture takes center stage as the engine that can transform nations’ economies. Smallholder farmers, who produce the majority of agricultural products, face various challenges, including access to adequate information, services, and key value chains. ICT is believed to play a pivotal role in disseminating information and linking farmers with clients in the agricultural value chain. The latest information and training tool, which many famers already carry in their pockets, is the mobile phone. Information plays a vital role in agricultural development and production and their effective communication will help facilitate mutual understanding among farmers, agricultural scientist and extension workers. Increasing production is a major challenge facing present agriculture. Smallholder farmers which dominate the landscape of developing world need to improve farming through acquiring adequate knowledge and information. The objective of seminar is to review the potential of mobile phone usage by farmers for dissemination of agricultural information in Ethiopia. Main factors that influence the use of mobile phone as: high cost of available technologies, inadequate infrastructure and low ICT skills, poor and expensive connectivity, inappropriate ICT policies, language barriers, low bandwidth, inadequate and/or inappropriate credit facilities and systems. The ministry agriculture when designing strategies for effective and efficient use of mobile phone for disseminating agricultural information, they have to consider those identified factors of mobile phone usage.