Client focused extension approach for disseminating soil fertility management in central Kenya
Mugwe, J. N.
Muchai, Serah W.K.
Mairura, Franklin S.
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Land degradation and soil nutrient depletion have become serious threats to agricultural productivity in sub- Saharan Africa. To improve agriculture production, research has led to recommendation of a range of integrated Soil fertility Management (ISFM) options, of proven effectiveness, for soil fertility improvement. Although many factors contribute to the low adoption of ISFM by farmers, communication gaps between extension agents and farmers lie at the heart of the problem. Hence, the study sought to investigate factors considered by agricultural extension agents in selection of communication channels to disseminate soil fertility information in the central highlands of Kenya. Structured questionnaires were used to elicit information from 105 extension agents. Both descriptive and inferential statistics were used for data analysis. In choosing the communication method to be used in dissemination of soil fertility management (SFM) practices, target group was scored as the most relevant factor followed by type of SFM, time available then number of staff sequentially. Education was perceived to highly influence the selection of workshop (M= 3.4) while age was perceived to highly influence the selection of video showing (M= 2.8) as extension methods in dissemination of SFM. The implication of the study is that diverse communication channels should be utilized to get to farmers of different socio economic characteristics.