Determination of efficiency and Factors influencing IT among the small scale Ware Potato producers in kenya
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The average potato production levels in Kenya are low (8.74 tonlha) but farmers could still achieve high level of production of up to 25 tons/ha using the same technologies. This means that some potato farmers are losing out on outputs as well as incurring additional costs due to production inefficiency. To solve these productivity disparities, the study identified the degree of efficiency and its determinants among the potato farmers in the three districts in Kenya. The study specified a Cobb-Douglas production function and used its dual cost function in efficiency measurement. The results were derived from a cross-sectional data of 211 systematic-randomly sampled potato growing households from three districts (Nyandarua, Nakuru and Kiambu). The results show that variations in output were due to inefficiency among the respondents. The results show 95% (Nyandarua), 99% (Nakuru) and 99 %( Kiambu) variations in potato outputs among farmers were due to inefficiency The predicted average efficiencies among Nyandarua potato farmers were Economic Efficiency (EE) 15%, Allocative Efficiency (AE) 37% and Technical Efficiency (TE) 44%, Nakuru potato farmers' average efficiencies levels were EE (27%), AE (42%) and TE (72%), and that of Kiambu potato farmers were EE (12%), AE (27%) and TE (44%). In Nakuru, potato farmers incurred an additional cost of production due to allocative inefficiency of 41% and that of technical inefficiency was 24 %. In Nyandarua potato farmers lost out on costs by 23% (allocative inefficiency) and 39% (technical inefficiency). In Kiambu, cost of technical and allocative inefficiency was 34% and 34% respectively. The results indicated that production costs and productivity disparities among the farmers were brought about by inefficiencies which were embedded to farmers' and farms' specific characteristics. Education, farm loan, farm size and number of seasons of growing potato were positively related to farmers' efficiency. Age, gender and employment were significant and negatively related to production efficient of potatoes. Therefore, the study recommends policy interventions in form of targeting right agroecological zone, young and full-time farmers, sufficient land s,ize and provision of farm loans to unwind liquidity limitation among potato producers. Gender issues, age and off-farm employment were impediment to potato productivity.