The Managerial Factors Influencing Sugarcane Production by Farmers of Mayoni Division, Mumias Sugar Company in Kenya
Dindi, Everlyn A.
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Management is the cornerstone of organizational effectiveness. People‟s efforts are co-ordinated and guided towards achievement of organizational objectives through management processes. People are usually motivated to carry out the management processes in order to satisfy needs either inherent or from the external. Mumias Sugar Company (MSC) is a large-scale organization and hence is controlled by bureaucratic structures. MSC supplies 60% of the sugar consumed in Kenya, but its survival is uncertain due to the decline in sugarcane productivity on the farms. Reports show that 92% of the sugarcane milled in MSC is supplied by contracted farmers. Over the years, there has been a continuous decline in sugarcane productivity in outgrowers contracted farms which has declined from a high of 137 tons cane per ha (TCH) in 1973 to 58 TCH in 2010. This has adversely affected mill-cane requirement by Mumias Sugar Company. It‟s in view of this problem that the objectives of the study were to determine the influence of managerial factors of extension services, contract sugarcane production, food security and financial factors on sugarcane production by farmers. The literature review explored the various managerial factors that have influenced crop production in Kenya and other parts of the world. Descriptive study design was used to investigate into factors influencing sugarcane production by contracted cane farmers. Purposive sampling was used to select a sample of 262 farmers from a target population of 2619 contracted cane farmers.The data collection instruments included self-administered semi-structured questionnaire for farmers. Secondary data was obtained from Agricultural reports of Mumias Sugar Company. Data was analysed using both qualitative and quantitative means. Descriptive analysis was used to organize, summarize and describe the research data. The data was computed using Statistical Packages for Social Sciences (SPSS). A summary of study findings revealed that bureaucratic system of contract farming was lengthy and hence de-motivated farmers from engaging into sugarcane farming. The findings also revealed that MSC was not honoring their management responsibility of providing food seeds and payment of sugarcane income to farmers within 30 days. Food insecurity was negatively affecting sugarcane management hence production. And some of the recommendations in the study included MSC management; to review her contract farming processes to reduce the time taken and motivate farmers into farming, to engage business partners that can provide food grains to address food insecurity.