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Title: Agricultural information sources and pathways and their impact on Sorghum(Sorghurm bicolor (L.) Moench) production in Ndiwa Sub-county
Authors: Mbanda, Achieng' ,Susan
Keywords: Agricultural Information
Issue Date: Sep-2017
Publisher: Egerton University
Abstract: The access to and utilization of agricultural information by farmers is important in contributing to improvement in agricultural production in any country. In Kenya, the situation regarding relaying of agricultural information to the farmers and the pathways used is unsatisfactory. This is specifically the case in the production of sorghum by farmers in Westem Kenya. Sorghum (Sorghum bicolor (L) Moench) is ranked as the third cereal crop in Kenya. It is drought resistant and quite popular in drier areas of Kenya. It is grown across different agro-ecological zones and is used for food, livestock feed and brewing. Sorghum farming in Ndhiwa Sub-County, located in Western Kenya, is an important agricultural activity in the local economy. Technologies have been developed with the aim of promoting its production in the country. However, despite the joint efforts by various research agencies and partners, its production has stagnated and yield remained low. This was carried out in Ndhiwa Sub-county, in Homa Bay County, Western Kenya, and data collected among 379 sorghum farmers randomly sampled and interviewed using semi-structured questionnaires. Simple descriptive statistics applied to the data collected were used to identify agricultural information sources and pathways the famters use, and inferential tools of the multinomial logit used to determine the factors influencing the choice of agricultural information sources and pathways while propensity score matching used to determine the impact of accessing agricultural information on sorghum production. The study findings revealed that the most important sources of information available to the farmers were fellow farmers (40.9% of the respondents), Agricultural Extension Officers (25.3%), researchers and Comrnunity-based Organizations (18.5%) and the popular pathways used to communicate infonnation from these sources were farmer-to-farmer (67.6% of the respondents), radios (17.2%), and brochures (8.0%). The household head’s gender, age, experience and highest education attained and the farm size, land ownership, employment/off-farm activities, access to credit facility and group membership significantly influenced access to agricultural information sources. On the other hand, the household head’s age, level of education attained, farm size, farming experience, membership and access to credit facilities had a statistically significant influence on the choice of pathways. By accessing appropriate agricultural information, a farmer is able to increase his/her yield by 4 bags per acre. Farmers who accessed agricultural information disseminated and communicated in an appropriate had their sorghum yield increase by 4 (four) bags compared to those who did not access the information.
Appears in Collections:Faculty of Agriculture

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