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Abstract

There is wide interest in both management circles and service industries in forecasts of the future uptake of computers on farm and horticultural businesses. Similarly, knowledge of how computer owning managers are utilizing them is of interest. From a 1992/93 postal survey of a stratified random sample of New Zealand producers it was determined that of the 24 per cent with computers, 19 per cent used them for business purposes and 5 per cent solely for entertainment and other non-business functions. An analysis of the length of past and anticipated ownership suggests New Zealand farmers are near the maximum uptake rate on the traditional sigmoid adoption curve. Existing ownership was positively correlated with farmer education level and farm size. On average, the computer was used 6.87 hours/week and three-quarters of respondents believed the benefits compensated for the costs. Farm budgeting and financial recording were the major business uses.

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