Rice Milling Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises and Poverty Reduction in Nasarawa State
This study carried out a survey among rice millers in Nasarawa state to ascertain the effects of engaging in rice milling on poverty reduction. The results of the analysis of data, using logistic regression, indicated that Start-Up Capital (SUC), Quantity of Rice Produced (QRP), Quantity of Rice Sold (QRS) and Income from rice milling activities (INC) all have positive and statistically significant impact on poverty reduction in the study area, while the impact of expenses incurred is negative and statistically significant at 5% level of significance. Additionally, increase in start-up capital, quantity of rice produced, quantity of rice sold and income of the respondents from the activities of rice milling, increased the probability or odds of reducing poverty by 0.425%, 0.131%, 0.771% and 0.588%, respectively. Furthermore, the study found that number of respondents who were below the upper and lower poverty lines fell and the depth of poverty among rice millers had reduced for both groups plus the number of non-poor had increased after engaging in rice milling activities. The study, concludes that engaging in rice milling activities reduces poverty in Nasarawa state and recommends that the Government should support the rice milling industry by making available funds in terms of grants and low interest rate loans for investment in the rice industry and creating an enabling environment to reduce the cost incurred in running the business so as to income generation and consequently poverty reduction.
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