There are a large number of management tools available to farmers, however, some are utilised by only a small percentage. The reasons behind the choice not to use a particular tool were investigated using a postal questionnaire that was distributed to all New Zealand sheep farmers in 2014. Farmers were asked first to indicate from a list of 40 farm-management tools those they had used in the previous three years. For tools they had not used, they were asked to select one from a list of eight reasons. A total of 1659 usable questionnaires were received. The most commonly cited reason for not using any given tool was “not relevant to my situation” (50.3%) followed by “benefits not apparent” (15.3%) and “it’s an unwanted complication” (15.0%). Demographic factors (age, education, gender, farm type and flock size) influenced the reasons for non-use of 20 of the 22 tools. Reasons for non-use of fecundity-boosting vaccine or quarantine treatment for footrot were not influenced (P>0.05) by any demographic factors. The results suggest that although many farmers do not see the relevance of particular tools to their enterprise, demographic factors can influence their reasons for not using a tool.
Proceedings of the New Zealand Society of Animal Production, Volume 79, Palmerston North, 125-130, 2019
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