Effect of seasonal fodder availability on smallholder dairy farmers’ participation in markets in Mosop sub-county, Kenya
The growing demand for animal products in developing countries presents opportunities for smallholder dairy farmers to participate in markets. However, seasonal fodder scarcity is a pervasive limitation to dairy productivity and disrupts market participation. The objective of this paper was to determine the influence of seasonal fodder availability on the participation of smallholder farmers in fodder and milk markets. Primary data was collected in a cross-sectional survey involving a random sample of 176 farmers, in Mosop sub-County, Nandi County of Kenya. Complete data for computation of fodder scarcity and market participation was available from 130 farmers. Data was processed in Excel and subsequently analysed in Statistical Package for Social Scientist (SPSS version 21) software using descriptive and logistic regression statistics. Study results revealed that an increase in fodder deficit was associated with a decline in milk sales (β= -.95, p=0.002), leading to an increase in milk price (β= 0.59, p=0.024) and increase in the quantity of purchased concentrate feed (β=0.17, p=0.038). The study concludes that fodder scarcity leads to low farmer market participation and recommends the strengthening of producer organizations to facilitate feed and milk marketing, capacity building on feed formulation and utilization, conservation and processing. These capacities would enable farmers to meet fodder demands in the dry season and would stabilize milk prices if supported with incentives for private and public partnerships investments in the feed value chain.
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Copyright (c) 2021 Beatrice Chepkoech Tuei
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