Farmers’ Preferences for the Design of Fruit Fly Pest-Free Area (FF-PFA) in Kerio-Valley: A Latent-Class Approach

Kennedy O. Pambo, Rachel A. Okinyi, Dennis O. Olila, Isabel J.A. Ochieng


Fruit flies are a very important group of pests for many countries due to their potential to cause damage in fruits thus restricting access to international markets for plant products that can host fruit flies. The high probability of introduction of fruit flies associated with a wide range of hosts’ results in restrictions imposed by many importing countries to accept fruits from areas in which these pests are established. For these reasons, establishment and maintenance of pest free areas for fruit flies (FF-PFAs) is receiving considerable attention in the current policy debates. Kenya Plant Health Inspectorate Service (KEPHIS) has taken the lead to establish and help maintain FF-PFAs in the main mango production zones of Elgeyo-Marakwet County of Kenya. However, as the ultimate success of the programme depends on farmers’ judgment and acceptance, acquiring information about potential demand is of paramount importance for policy advice. In this paper, we assess the demand in terms of consumer preferences and willingness to pay for FF-PFAs using a stated choice experiment method (SCE). A novel feature of this paper is that it focuses on how the FF-PFA should be designed and presented. Results from the latent class model (LCM) reveal that farmers prefer FF-PFAs featuring training, market information with sales contract, large benefits to other mango value-chain actors and when they are recommended by officials.

Keywords: FF-PFA, SCE, LCM, Farmers’ preference, Mango

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