How do climate change adaptation strategies result in unintended maladaptive outcomes? Perspectives of tomato farmers

Lawrence GUODAAR*, Felix ASANTE, Gabriel ESHUN, Kabila ABASS, Kwadwo AFRIYIE, Devine Odame APPIAH, Razak GYASI, Gerald ATAMPUGRE, Prince ADDAI, Felix KPENEKUU

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)peer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


Most studies on farmers’ adaptation strategies do not adequately treat the downside of such practices, and how practitioners can survive with the strategies in the wake of climate variability and change. Emphasis has always been on benefits of adaptation which includes showing resilience to increase food production, enhancing livelihood outcomes with less vulnerability, and reducing poverty. This project was undertaken to determine unintended maladaptive outcomes resulting from farmers’ adaptive strategies to climate variability. The project took place in rural southern Ghana with input from tomato (Solanum lycopersicum L.) growers from the Offinso North District. To mitigate adverse effects of climate variability on tomato productivity, adaptive strategies resulted in reduction in agro-biodiversity, release of greenhouse gas, pollution of nearby water, increasing soil acidity above the optimum requirement of tomato, adverse effects of household farm labor, increasing vulnerability of dependents, increasing pressure on social facilities, competition of crops for nutrients, moisture and sun light, and increase in spread of pests and diseases. Age, gender, formal education, farming experience, and access to extension services influenced farmers’ perceived maladaptive outcomes of adaptation strategies. Adaptation strategies to climate variability, if unchecked, can increase vulnerability, or erode, sustainable development opportunities for farmers in rural agroecological settings.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)15-31
Number of pages17
JournalInternational Journal of Vegetable Science
Issue number1
Early online date31 Jan 2019
Publication statusPublished - 2 Jan 2020


  • climate variability
  • mixed-methods
  • Offinso North District
  • Solanum lycopersicum
  • southern Ghana


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