Socio Economic Drivers Influencincing Smallholder Maize Production in Tobacco Growing Zones of Migori County, Kenya

Ojala Daphen Otieno


Known by its scientific name Zea Mays, maize is the staple food for most households in Kenya. It is mostly produced by small scale farmers. Maize is also an important livestock feed both as silage and as crop residue, grain and is also used industrially for starch and oil extraction. It is an important source of carbohydrate, protein, iron, vitamin B, and minerals. Kenyans consume maize in a wide variety of ways (ugali, porridges and beer). Green maize, fresh on the cob, is eaten roasted or boiled separately or mixed with legumes. Every part of the maize plant has economic value: the grain, leaves, stalk, tassel, and cob can all be used to produce a large variety of food and non-food products. The general objective of this study was to investigate the socio economic constraints to smallholder maize production in Tobacco growing regions of Migori County, Kenya. However, it was guided by the following specific objectives; to determine the effect of tobacco farming on maize production and to assess the impact of socio-economic factors on smallholder maize production. This study used time series techniques to investigate the relationship between tobacco farming and smallholder maize production in Migori County, during the period 1967 to 2010.The data was collected from Kenya National Bureau of Statistics. The data that was parametrically analyzed using E-views to giving descriptive statistics and inferential statistics. Descriptive statistics involved comparison of means, cross tabulation, use of tables, pie charts and bar graph. A fitted Cobb-Douglas production model was adopted in this study and using the framework of error correction mechanism, it was found that the lagged capital input, fertilizers, labor, research and extension services significantly propagate maize production. Unit root and Granger-causality tests were carried out to make adequate allowance for the dynamic relationship, on stationary and spurious regression problems. However, in the structural macroeconomic model, the individual lagged variables, the aggregated co-regressed variables resulted into a positive R squared at 0.01 significant levels.  Surprisingly, the coefficient of the lagged maize production was found to be negative (- 0.4747) and insignificant only at the 10% level.

Keywords: Smallholder Maize Production, Error Correction Model and Food Security

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