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ANALYSIS OF THE USE OF INOCULANT-BASED TECHNOLOGIES BY SMALLHOLDER FARMERS AND ITS EFFECT ON OUTPUT COMMERCIALIZATION: CASE OF FIELD BEAN FARMERS IN WESTERN KENYA

Teresia Nekesah Wafula, Julius Juma Okello and David Jakinda Otieno

No 269392, Dissertations and Theses from University of Nairobi, Department of Agricultural Economics

Abstract: Use of inoculant-based technologies in legume production has been practiced for over a century but in Africa, the technology is relatively new and especially to smallholder farmers. The introduction of these technologies has enabled increased legume productivity as well as increased soil fertility in other countries. The inoculant-based technologies have been disseminated in Western Kenya by various organizations and projects including: Sustainable Intensification of Maize-Legume cropping systems for food security in Eastern and Southern Africa (SIMLESA) project through the Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organization (KALRO)-Kakamega and Embu, Nitrogen 2 Africa (N2AFRICA), United States Department of Agriculture- National Institute of Food and Agriculture (USDA-NIFA), and Non-governmental organizations such as Appropriate Rural Development Agriculture Program (ARDAP). The dissemination targeted several counties including Bungoma, Busia and Kakamega. While past studies have assessed the adoption of inoculant technology as a single package, the effect of different inoculant- based technologies on bean yield remains unknown. There is also lack of information on the role inoculant-based technologies on bean output market participation. This study examined the use and effect of inoculant-based technologies on smallholder field bean farm households in western Kenya. A multivariate probit (MVP) model was applied to assess factors affecting farmers‟ decision on use of alternative inoculant-based technologies. In v addition, a Tobit regression was estimated to assess the effect of the use of inoculant-based technologies on household output commercialization, measured by the share of sales, among project participating households and non-participating households. Data was collected from 248 farmers stratified by participation in projects that promote inoculant-based technologies. The information was collected in August and September 2014 and included farm and farmer characteristics; household endowment with physical, financial, social and human capital; market participation and institutional factors; field bean production and input usage; and farmer knowledge/awareness and information sources. Descriptive results indicate that years of experience, total value of non-land assets and distance to the road significantly and positively affected adoption at 1percent, 5percent and 10percent error level respectively. Out of the five inoculant-based technologies demonstrated to farmers, only three were found to be widely adopted. These are: inoculant only, inoculant and farm yard manure and inoculant and fertilizer. Results from the multivariate probit regression analysis showed that the distance to agricultural extension office, group membership, project participation, wealth (proxied by the total value of non-land assets), age and gender significantly affected the use of the inoculant-based technologies. The Tobit regression analysis results showed that transaction costs (proxied by the distance to group office and group and project participation), age, years of schooling, totals assets, access to information (proxied by extension visits) and total bean production area significantly influenced the commercialization of beans by the small holder farmers.

Keywords: Agricultural; and; Food; Policy (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-agr
Date: 2017-12-08
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