The Determinants of Coffee Supply in Gichugu Division in Kirinyaga District: Kenya
Kariuki, G. J.
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The general objective of this study was to investigate the factors that determine the supply of coffee in Gichugu Division in Kirinyaga District in Kenya. Data were collected from a sample of 67 fanners in Kirima, Kabare and Bar~gwi locations of Gichugu Division. The data were analyzed using both descriptive statistics and-the use of econometric model. Four versions of the model were estimated. The interpretation of the results was based on regression results that are consistent with economic expectations on the coefficients of the model and their statistical significance. Coffee supply was found to be positively related to expenditure on inputs, the price of coffee received by the farmers, the size of the farmer's household, the number of coffee trees owned and managed by the farmer, and the farmer's off-farm activity. The distance from the farm to the factory and credit extension to farmers in form of loans and school fees were found to be negatively related to coffee supply. Furthermore, the study found that expenditure on farm inputs is the most significant determinant of coffee supply. Based on the findings of the study, it is recommended that fanners should diversify their farm activities to include activities for example, poultry keeping and zero grazing methods of cattle rearing to supplement their incomes as well as increasing their investment in coffee farming. Credit extension to farmers in form of material farm inputs should be enhanced to boost expenditure on farm inputs in order to increase coffee supply. To increase coffee supply, the government should stabilize the coffee prices to remove the price uncertainties that demotivate fanners to give maximum attention to their coffee farms.