Profiling adopters of Bt cotton in China by gender, farm size, education and communication

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Qu, Shuyang
Major Professor
Eric A. Abbott
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Greenlee School of Journalism and Communication
The Greenlee School of Journalism and Communication offers two majors: Advertising (instructing students in applied communication for work in business or industry), and Journalism and Mass Communication (instructing students in various aspects of news and information organizing, writing, editing, and presentation on various topics and in various platforms). The Department of Agricultural Journalism was formed in 1905 in the Division of Agriculture. In 1925 its name was changed to the Department of Technical Journalism. In 1969 its name changed to the Department of Journalism and Mass Communications; from 1969 to 1989 the department was directed by all four colleges, and in 1989 was placed under the direction of the College of Sciences and Humanities (later College of Liberal Arts and Sciences). In 1998 its name was changed to the Greenlee School of Journalism and Communication.
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Bt cotton has been commercialized in China for 13 years. This study sets out to examine the pattern of Chinese farmers' adoption of Bt cotton, what factors influenced adoption, and what communication channels were most effective in reaching Chinese farmers.

Personal interviews were conducted among 108 farmers living in villages with Bt cotton in Shandong, China. The results show that most of the farmers are Bt cotton adopters, and they are highly similar in terms of education level, information seeking behavior, seed purchase/cotton sales behaviors, satisfaction level with Bt cotton performance, and concerns about Bt cotton.

This study found the diffusion of Bt cotton among farmers in Shandong China shares some common factors with the diffusion of hybrid corn among farmers in Iowa: Neighbors and salesmen from seed companies played an important role as first sources of information about Bt cotton; Interpersonal channels were more frequently used than mass media channels and company channels like seed companies or lectures from pesticide companies; farm size was a strong predictor to distinguish Bt cotton rejecters and adopters. In China local government also played a positive role in promoting Bt cotton.

Sun Jan 01 00:00:00 UTC 2012