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Title: Effect of Agroforestry Fruits Commercialization on the Income of Small Scale Farmers in Kwale and Kilifi Counties, Kenya
Authors: Mwenmbe, Abel Mbega
Keywords: Agroforestry Fruits Commercialization
Issue Date: Jul-2021
Publisher: Egerton University
Abstract: In the past ten years, Kwale and Kilifi Counties have been hit by adverse climatic changing patterns where small scale farmers have been severely affected. This has resulted to poor agricultural yields as the small scale farmers mainly depend on the deteriorating staple food farming. Agroforestry is seen as the best alternative to boost land productivity and small scale farmers’ income. Despite agroforestry interventions by the government and non-governmental organizations as a sustainable land use system, the level of produce commercialization in Kwale and Kilifi counties is still low, while most of the population lives below the poverty line, majority of them being rural households. The main objective of the study is to contribute towards improved livelihood of small holder farmers through commercial agroforestry in Kwale and Kilifi counties. Specifically it was intended to characterize the agroforestry small scale farmers and the existing systems practiced; to determine the factors affecting the choice of agroforestry fruits market outlets, to determine the factors influencing the extent of agroforestry fruits commercialization and its effect on small scale farmers’ income in Kwale and Kilifi Counties. Systematic sampling method was used to sample farmers for an ultimate selection of 208 respondents. Data was collected from Kilifi South, Kilifi North and Matuga Sub counties. Respondents were selected in Mtepeni, Junju, Kibarani, Mnarani, Tezo, Watamu wards in Kilifi South and Kilifi North respectively. In Matuga sub county respondents were selected from Tiwi and Tsimba wards. Primary data was collected using semi-structured questionnaires. Descriptive statistics, multivariate probit, household commercialization index, tobit regression and the Cost Benefit Analysis (CBA) analytical techniques were used for data analysis. Majority of the farmers with commercial agroforestry systems chose high value market outlets like town markets while most subsistence farmers sold at farm gate and middle men. Factors that significantly influenced produce commercialization were age, education level, labour hours, land size, farmer group, credit access and market distance. Commercial agroforestry positively impacted small scale farmers’ income as indicated by the Cost Benefit Analysis results where farmers who ventured into commercialization had a BCR of 2.7 while farmers with subsistence systems had a BCR of less than 1. The agroforestry small scale farmers are thus encouraged to embrace commercial farming as the benefits outweighed the costs in Kwale and Kilifi Counties. The high transaction costs involved in the commercialization process also needs to be addressed by the relevant stakeholders so as to encourage more agroforestry small farmers enter into market partipation.
Appears in Collections:Faculty of Agriculture

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