Factors affecting production of tea in Kenya: a case of tea farmers in Othaya division of Nyeri district
Githinji, Beatrice Kanani
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Growth in tea production in Kenya has slowed down in recent years. This slow growth led to this study. The objective was to establish the challenges small-scale tea farmers are facing. The data for the study was generated both from primary and secondary sources. The population was stratified by the buying centres. Data analysis was done using SPSS. The major variables examined were extension services, labour cost, tea payment and prices, delivery services, cultural practices and infrastructure. It was found out that the relative size of the farms and area under tea affects tea yields depending on labour availability and financial status of the family. The study recommended the expansion of the annual factory processing capacity; increase the number of buying centres, proper supply of gunny bags in buying centres and introduction of motorized plucking machines. The roads leading to the buying centres should also be tarmacked to increase efficiency in leaf transport. The study found out that the tea producing zones with low tea quality receives lower tea prices and also realizes lower tea yields compared to others. It was recommended that KTDA improve infrastructure and delivery services to improve quality of tea.