This study attempted to analyze production efficiency of sesame producers in Bench Maji Zone of south western, Ethiopia. The study used both primary and secondary data sources. Multistage random sampling technique was used to draw 270 sesame producers. Descriptive statistics and econometric models were used to analyze the data. The estimated stochastic production frontier model indicated that input variables such as inorganic fertilizer, sesame seed, oxen power, Labor and chemicals found to be important factors in increasing the level of sesame output in the study area. The result further revealed significant differences in production efficiency among sesame growing farmers in the study area. Applying the Cobb-Douglas functional form the average, technical, allocative and economic efficiencies found are 50.72%, 86.83% and 44.2% for sesame producers, respectively. The results of the inefficiency model shows that, among fourteen variables used in the analysis, experience in sesame production, education level of household head, farm income, total cultivated land, social responsibility, frequency of extension contact, participation in off/non-farm activities, credit, proximity to market and soil fertility were found to be significant sources of technical, allocative and economic inefficiencies of sesame producer farmers. Strengthening education, extension service and strengthening credit access at affordable interest rate with effective farm management are better to improve efficiency sesame producers. Furthermore, policy implication drawn from the findings aimed at strengthening accessibility of transport services and developing infrastructure, improving farmers’ knowledge through adult education as well as their experience sharing with other sesame producing farmers, improving productivity through strengthening supportive institutions (extension service provider) motivating sesame producing farm household to participate different training. Therefore, those important socioeconomic and institutional factors which are mentioned above must take into account to improve the productivity of sesame in the study area.
Keywords: Efficiency, Inefficiency, Stochastic production frontier, Sesame, Dual cost, Bench maji