Determinants of Small-holder Farmers Extent of Market Participation; Case of Rice Marketing in Ahero Irrigation Scheme, Kenya

Benard O. Apind, Job K. Lagat, Hillary K. Bett, Japheth K. Kirui


The extent of market participation among smallholder farmers indicates the level of commercialization of rural production since the marketed surplus reaches the urban consumers and other rural non-producers through market participation by the producing households. During the government management, rice farmers within the National Irrigation Schemes were compelled to deliver all their output to the National Irrigation Board (NIB) mills for milling and marketing. Currently farmers market their own rice and make any use decisions with their output, a case that attracted many private traders. The entry of the private sector traders is often regarded as a motivation to a wide number of participants. The objective of this paper was to determine the extent of market participation by small-holder rice farmers and the factors that influences the extent of participation. The study was conducted in Ahero irrigation Scheme (AIS), in Kisumu County Kenya. Random sampling procedure was employed to contact 182 respondents and a semi-structured questionnaire used to collect data from smallholder rice farmers in the scheme. The data was analyzed using descriptive statistics and Multiple Regression model. The result indicated that about 89% of rice produced in the scheme was marketed and seven factors; household size, off farm income, grading, group marketing, source of market information, extension services offered and access to credit significantly influenced the extent of rice marketing among the farmers. Based on the results of this study, policy implications was drawn towards improving commercialization of smallholder farming and household income in the study area.

Key words: Extent of market participation, small-holder rice farmers, multiple regression

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