This study used a Goal Programming approach to investigate the effects of changes in agricultural policies and labour supply due to deaths in farming households, on use of woodlands under two regimes; namely one where utilization of forest resources was restricted to within sustainable levels and under another where this restriction was relaxed, i.e. an open access situation. The study sites for this work were Mutangi in Chivi district and Mafungutsi in Gokwe districts. The results from the study indicate that households in communal areas are highly differentiated with regards to ability to satisfying family sustenance goals; relatively poor households depend on woodlands for a significant part of their income needs but richer families are more efficient in harvesting woodlands; increase in agricultural product prices or increase in crops yield tend to increase harvesting of woodland products among the better off and reduce woodland harvests by the poorer households; and loss of a member of a household increases the degree of poverty especially among the relatively poor with the greatest impacts being felt with loss of female members of households.
Zimbabwe Science News 36(1+2): 42-51