Data set of smallholder farm households in banana-coffee-based farming systems containing data on farm households, agricultural production and use of organic farm waste

Data Brief. 2021 Feb 16;35:106833. doi: 10.1016/j.dib.2021.106833. eCollection 2021 Apr.


The data was collected in the Karagwe and Kyerwa districts of the Kagera region in north-west Tanzania. It encompasses 150 smallholder farming households, which were interviewed on the composition of their household, agricultural production and use of organic farm waste. The data covers the two previous rainy seasons and the associated vegetation periods between September 2016 and August 2017. The knowledge of experts from the following institutions was included in the discussion on the selection criteria: two local non-profit organisations, i.e., WOMEDA and the MAVUNO Project; the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA); and the National Land Use Planning Commission (NLUPC). Households were selected for inclusion if all of the following applied to them: 1) less than 10 acres of land (4.7 ha) registered in the village offices, 2) no agricultural training, and 3) decline in the fertility of their land since they started farming (self-reported). We selected 150 smallholder households out of a pool of 5,000 households known to WOMEDA in six divisions of the Kyerwa and Karagwe districts. The questionnaire contained 54 questions. The original language of the survey was Kiswahili. All interviews were audio recorded. The answers were digitalised and translated into English. The data set contains the raw data with 130 quantitative and qualitative variables. For quantitative variables, the only analysis that was made was the conversion of units, e.g., land area was converted from acres to hectares, harvest from buckets to kilograms and then to tons, and heads of livestock to Tropical Livestock Units (TLU). Qualitative variables were summarised into categories. All data has been anonymised. The data set includes geographical variables, household information, agricultural information, gender-specific responsibilities, economic data, farm waste management, and water, energy and food availability (Water-Energy-Food (WEF) Nexus). Variables are written in italics. The following geographical variables are part of the data set: district, division, ward, village, hamlet, longitude, latitude, and altitude. Household information includes start of farming, household size, gender and age of household members. Agricultural information includes land size, size of homegarden, crops, livestock and livestock keeping, trees, and access to forest. Gender-specific responsibilities includes producing and exchanging seeds, weed control, terracing, distributing organic material to the fields, care of annual and perennial crops, harvesting of crops, decisions about the harvest and animal products, selling and buying products, working on their own farm and off-farm, cooking, storing food, collecting and caring for drinking water, washing, and toilet cleaning. Economic data includes distance to the market, journey time to market, transport methods, labourers employed by the household, working off-farm, and assets such as type of house. Variables relevant to the WEF Nexus are drinking water source and treatment, meals per day, months without food, cooking fuel, and type of toilet. Variables on farm waste management are the use of crop residues, food and kitchen waste, livestock manure, cooking ash, animal bones, and human urine and faeces. The data can be potentially reused and further developed for the purpose of agricultural production analysis, socio-economic analysis, comparison to other regions, conceptualisation of waste and nutrient management, establishment of land use concepts, and further analysis on food security and healthy diets.

Keywords: Banana-coffee-based farming systems; Food security; Gender-based research; Organic farm waste management; Smallholder agriculture; Soil fertility.