Influence of Farmer Groups’ Characteristics on Up Scaling Uptake of Soil Fertility Technologies in Eastern Kenya
Mucheru, Muna M.W
MetadataShow full item record
In the Sub-Saharan Africa, soil degradation has led to a decline in crop productivity and has been linked to hunger and poverty. Farmers’ groups approach is one of the methodologies used for dissemination of soil fertility enhancement technologies but understanding of how this approach influences uptake of the technologies is limited. This study assessed the influence of farmer groups’ characteristics on the technology application. The study was carried out in Mbeere South and Maara sub-counties in Kenya where interview schedules were administered to 60 farmer groups. Descriptive and inferential statistics were performed on the data collected using SPSS software. The results showed that several key variables influenced groups’ application of animal manure. These include; the number of females in the group (p=0.008), frequency for group meetings (p=0.050) and group size (p=0.019). Variables that influenced application of fertilizer include; Tropical livestock unit (p=0.045), group formation drivers (p=0.098), and group membership qualification (p=0.028). Variables that influenced application of a combination of manure combined with inorganic fertilizer included; number of females in the group (p=0.067), reason for applying the combination (p=0.003) and group gender (p=0.056). From the results, it is evident that any government agency, project or organization planning to upscale dissemination of soil fertility enhancement technologies needs to work with groups that are small in size, having more female members, meeting monthly and with members who have large herds/flocks of animals.