Factors that affect production and marketing of mangoes in Kenya: a case of Maragua ridge location in district of central province
The horticultural industry is the fastest growing industry in Kenya. This growth has been supported by agriculture research both from the local and from abroad. Small-scale growers in Kenya have benefited from public sector research while the large growers have depended on technologies imported from European countries. The objectives of this study was to examine the area under mango cultivation methods, how pests and diseases are controlled, varieties cultivated, mango customers, price determination and marketing problems. Primary data was collected through questionnaires and unstructured interviews. The study established that small-scale farmers mainly grow mangoes for commercial purposes. The farm size does not determine the number of trees a farmer plants. However, lack of land was cited by those farmers who indicated that they do not intend to increase their mango trees. The choice of mango varieties grown by a farmer is determined by marketing, resistance to diseases and the wish to have fruits ready in the market early to late in the season. There are those varieties, which mature late. The farmer can therefore choose to plant the varieties he wants. The mango varieties which do not have high demand in the market can be changed to those that are popular with the customers by way of grafting. Exotic mangoes are very prone to pests and diseases. Great care is required to improve both quality and quantity. Government should promote mango farming by providing qualified personnel where mangoes can be grown. Research on pests and diseases should be intensified and the findings made available to farmers. Small-scale industries should be set up to process mango fruits, which do not meet export standards. Overseas promotion to areas of potential customers should be intensified.
- MST-Commerce