Agriculture Paper 2, WASSCE (SC), 2018

Question 2
(a)  State six problems of agricultural development in West Africa.                                            (6 marks)

(b)  Explain each of the following farm practices:
(i)    crop rotation;
(ii)   mixed farming.                                                                                                          (6 marks)

(c)  State three advantages of each of the following farm practices:
(i)   crop rotation;
(ii)    mixed farming.(6 marks)



  1. This question was fairly popular among the candidates. However, few candidates used the phrase ‘lack of’ instead of ‘inadequate’ in mentioning the problems of agricultural development in West Africa.
  2. Many candidates were unable to explain crop rotation and mixed farming as well as state the advantages of the farm practices.


The expected answers include:

2. (a)   Problems of agricultural development in West Africa

  • Inadequate basic amenities in rural areas                
  • Poor communication
  • Inadequate agricultural education/illiteracy             
  • Use of crude tools
  • Inadequate extension services                                 
  • Poor marketing system
  • Inadequate farm inputs                                             
  • Incidence of pests
  • Poor transportation network/bad roads                     
  • Incidence of diseases
  • Unfavourable land tenure system                            
  • Rural-urban migration
  • Negative attitude to farming                                    
  • Inadequate finance
  • Inadequate storage facilities
  • Inadequate processing facilities
  • Environmental degradation e.g. erosion, pollution
  • Unstable government policies and programmes
  • Unpredictable climatic condition/climatic change


    (b)   Explanation of farming practices
(i)    Crop rotation
Crop rotation is the type of cropping system whereby different types of crops are grown on   
the same piece of land in successive years or seasons in a definite sequence or order so as   
to maintain soil fertility following certain principles.
(ii)   Mixed farming
Mixed farming is the system of farming in which crops are grown and animals are reared
on the same piece of land at the same time. Fence could be constructed to separate the  
animals from the crops.

(c)   Advantages of farm practices     
(i)     Advantages of crop rotation

  • Properly planned rotation improves yield of crops;
  • Conserves soil nutrients/adds nitrogen  or nutrients to soil;
  • Checks/controls soil erosion;
  • Maximises the use of land;
  • Helps to check/prevents the spread of diseases or pests;
  • Allows for more efficient use of labour;
  • Controls the growth of weeds.

            (ii)    Advantages of mixed farming

  • Crop residues are used to feed livestock/farm animals;
  • Farmer has access to both crop and animal produce;
  • Animal manure can be added to the soil to increase its fertility;
  • Provides regular source of income to the farmer;
  • Large animals like cattle and donkeys can be used for drawing implements to help in the cultivation of crops;
  • Protects the farmer’s income in case of failure of any of the enterprises;