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Abstract

The paper examined how the farm management support provided by public extension to mitigate the eff ects of climate variability infl uences farmers’ production, and whether this support considers farmers’ capital assets. Both probability and non-probability sampling procedures were used to select districts, municipalities and farmers from 20 villages of Limpopo province, South Africa in January, 2014. Semi-structured questionnaires were used to collect data from fi eld-level extension agents and smallholder grain farmers. The most common climate variability coping strategy promoted by many agents was climate-smart agriculture practices. This strategy was applied by most users and non-users of extension support. The most popular channel used by agents to communicate information to farmers was farm visits. There were indications that agents did not consider producers’ capital assets in their choice of channels to communicate information to producers. Results further indicate that extension support, including climate variability information, contributed to increased crop yields, albeit small. It is recommended that fi eld trials be done to ensure proper application of climate variability coping measures. More use of mass media and group methods to supplement farm visits is recommended.

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