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Production Losses

Indicator Phrasing

% of target farmers who reported incurring crop production losses during the last season (caused by the most serious, pre-identified factors)
See indicator in other languages

Indicator Phrasing

English: % of target farmers who reported incurring crop production losses during the last season (caused by the most serious, pre-identified factors)

French: % des agriculteurs ciblés qui ont déclaré avoir subi des pertes de production pendant la dernière saison (causés par les facteurs les plus graves et pré-identifiés)

Portuguese: % de agricultores-alvo que reportaram perdas na produção da cultura durante a última temporada (causada pelos factores pré-identificados, mais graves)

Czech: % cílových farmářů, kteří během poslední sezóny zaznamenali produkční ztráty (způsobené nejzávažnějšími, předem definovanými faktory)

What is its purpose?

The indicator measures the proportion of supported farmers who during the last season experienced crop production loses caused by one or more of the most serious, pre-identified factors (such as specific diseases, insects or weeds). At the baseline stage, it helps with narrowing down the project's focus. At the endline stage, it shows the extent to which the project enabled farmers to address the main causes of production-related problems.

How to Collect and Analyse the Required Data

Calculate the indicator's value by using the following methodology: 


1) Specify the crop(s) your project and survey focuses on.



2) In consultation with the extension workers, local farmers and the project staff, list a limited number (3-4) of the most common causes of significant production losses for the crop(s) you focus on.



3) Collect the following data by conducting individual interviews with a representative sample of the target farmers:

Q1: During the last season, did you grow [specify the crop]?

A1: yes / no


(ask the following question only if the previous question is YES)


Q2: During the last season, was your production of [specify the crop] affected by [specify the cause of production losses]?

A2: yes / no


(the following “extra” question is highly recommended; ask it only if the previous two answers are YES)


Q3: I would like to understand to what extent your production was damaged by [specify the cause]. If we use a scale of 1 to 5 where 1 means that only very few crops were affected and 5 means that you lost nearly all crops, how big was the loss caused by [specify the cause]?

A3: …... [record scale 1 to 5]


The data collector needs to cross-check whether the answer to Q3 is correct (whether the respondent understood the “scale system”) by asking: “Can you please tell me how much of your crop you lost?” If there is a large difference between the stated loss and the answer to Q3, the data collector needs to clarify the actual loss with the respondent and if required, revise the answer to Q3.



4) To calculate the indicator’s value, divide the number of respondents whose crop production was affected by the number of respondents who grew the given crop. Multiply the result by 100 to convert it to a percentage. For example, 60 affected respondents divided by 300 respondents who grew the given crop, multiplied by 100 = 20% respondents/ farmers affected.


To assess the average severity of the damage, sum up the answers to Q3 and divide them by the number of people who responded to Q3. Your project should aim for a) decreasing the number of affected people and b) decreasing the severity of the damage.


Repeat the process for other common, severe causes and the crops you focus on.

Important Comments

1) Animal raising production losses are covered under Animal Mortality and Animal Morbidity indicators.


2) Do your best to secure photos of the diseases / pests / weeds and ask the data collectors to show them to the respondents to prevent any misunderstandings.


3) When describing the causes of production losses, be careful about the difference between the “appearance of the problem” (e.g. the crops have dried out) and the real causes (e.g. pests damaging the crops’ roots). In doing so, you will avoid making programming decisions based on incorrect information.


4) Ensure that the data collectors have the same understanding of what scale 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 mean and are able to explain it to the respondents in the same way.


5) Whenever possible, use this indicator together with the Reported Crop Yield and Testing of Promoted Practice or Adoption of Promoted Practice indicators and check for correlation between their values.


6) If you do not conduct the interviews soon after the season finishes, always be very clear about what season are you asking about.


7) If more types of crops are affected by similar diseases/ pests/ weeds, you can enquire about them at the same time (in the same question).

This guidance was prepared by People in Need ©

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