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Title: Access and utilization of Agro meteorological information by smallholder farmers in Perkerra and Lari-Wendani irrigation schemes, Kenya
Authors: Zendera, Willard
Keywords: Agro Meteorological Information -- Perkerra and Lari-Wendani
Issue Date: Mar-2011
Publisher: Egerton University
Abstract: Weather and climate variability are the major production risks and uncertainties impacting agricultural systems performance and management. This study investigated the access and factors that influence the utility of agro meteorological information by smallholder irrigation farmers in Lari Wendani and Perkerra irrigation schemes in Kenya. A systematic random sampling procedure was employed to select 255 farmers from a total population of 776 farmers. In Lari Wendani 33 farmers were interviewed and 222 farmers were interviewed in Perkerra irrigation scheme. These interviews were conducted after a pretest was done in Lari Wendani on 15 farmers who were attending a horticultural and marketing course. Structured questionnaires were used to elicit responses from the households. The units of measurements were farmers, irrigation and extension staff. Data were analyzed using descriptive statistics such as mean, percentage, ranking, standard deviation, χ2-test, and Spearman Correlation Coefficient. A multiple regression analysis model was used to analyze the influence of several independent variables on access to and utilization of agro meteorological information. Results indicated that 98% of the farmers were able to access agro meteorological information through radio. More than 60% indicated that they could not access meteorological information from bulletins, mobile, internet, extension, and barazas. Inadequate extension (72%) was cited as a major factor affecting farmers’ access to weather forecasts. More than 50% of the respondents made decisions always in the event that they received seasonal forecasts, onset date of the main rains and information on the expected amount of rainfall. The factors affecting farmers’ adoption of agro meteorological information were related to the inaccuracy of forecasts; inadequate weather forecasts information for meaningful decisions and the delay in releasing seasonal forecasts giving farmers less time to make preparations. It was concluded that socio-economic factors affect the level of adoption of agro meteorological innovations. The study emphasizes the need for training in extension in relation to dissemination of agro meteorological innovations and the use of feasible demonstrations to enhance the adoption of agro meteorological products.
Appears in Collections:Faculty of Agriculture

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