Feed the Future
This project is part of the U.S. Government's global hunger and food security initiative.

MEAS Evaluation: Experiences of Small-Scale Producers with Multiple Public-Private Partnerships in Produce Production and Marketing Organizations in Kenya

Date Published: 
March 1, 2015

Extension and advisory services (EAS) by private and public extension services providers (ESPs) can help improve food security, income generation, poverty alleviation and development. These services particularly benefit smallholder subsistence farmers. 

This study explores EAS approaches employed by the private and public sectors and their impacts on sustainable agricultural development among smallholders.

The survey covered five out of the eight provinces in Kenya. The smallholder farmers and ESPs represented 86 percent and 90 percent, respectively, of the target respondents. The study covered farmers who had been involved in production and marketing for over 10 years and ESPs who had worked with smallholder farmers for more than two years. The National Agricultural Sector Extension Policy (NASEP) set the guidelines for the survey.

The study found that smallholder subsistence farmers are highly dependent on a wide range of extension advisory services (EAS). Nevertheless, there are, as yet, no national legal and policy frameworks around EAS concerning, for example, commercial farming, structured and harmonized extension approaches and duplication of services. It is highly recommended that the government develop and implement national policies for EAS.

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<![endif]--> <!--StartFragment--> The study further recommends the development of standard ESP approaches for dealing with pests, diseases and safe use requirements because these are the most critical issues influencing gross productivity and profit margins for smallholders. The project could start by targeting a number of produce production and marketing organizations established by smallholder farmers and eventually be up-scaled to cover local market days. On-farm demonstrations have been conducted over the years, but “plant clinics” could be very attractive to smallholder farmers and benefit a larger percentage of the population.<!--EndFragment-->