Factors affecting distribution of maize seed in Trans-Nzoia County, Kenya
Kibiwott, Likoi Thomas
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Distribution of maize seed is a key factor in the process of improving maize productivity, but effective distribution has not been achieved in Trans-Nzoia County. To understand organization of distribution process of maize seed in Trans-Nzoia County, a major maize producing area in Kenya, the factors affecting distribution of maize seed were analyzed in five aspects, namely: product differentiation, conditions for entry in the hybrid maize seed sub-sector, the regulatory organs, the pricing of maize seed, and the marketing logistics. These aspects were of significance to scholars, farmers and seed companies in making decisions on how to improve the distribution of maize seed. Primary data was obtained randomly from a random sample 94 respondents. 29 stockists out of the total 203 who sell hybrid maize seed within the county and also 55 farmers sampled from a list of farmers obtained at the District Agricultural Office in Kitale Town. Ten (10) company officials were sampled purposively. Questionnaires were used as a data collection instrument. Questionnaires were administered to the respondent by hand delivery they were be given time frame of one week to complete on their own. For those respondents who were not able to interpret the questions on their own, the researcher assisted the respondents to complete the questionnaires. Data was analysed by use of descriptive statistics techniques and correlation analysis. These techniques include measure of central tendency, measures of dispersion, spearman's correlation analysis, and regression analysis. Factor analysis was used to aid in reducing the number of variables and to discover the underlying constructs that explain the variable. The results showed that the prices of maize seed were determined majorly by seed companies. The distribution has been liberalised with many stockists engaging in seed business. Farmers showed some preference for the variety H6213, H629 and H614. The package sizes that sell most are 2kg and 25kg.Therefore, there is need to focus on these package size. This showed that most farmers were small scale holders. Recommendations for the seed industry include: improved inspection on supply, increased access to credit to channel members, introduction of divisional warehouses for seeds by Seed Companies and finally competition on seed distribution should be encouraged.