Technical efficiency amongst cofee farmers in Kenya: a case study of Githunguri Division, Kiambu District
It is argued that technical efficiency is determined by individual farm and fanner-specific characteristics. Such characteristics may be divided into two groups; demographic characteristics, which dominate the decision making, process of the farmer,. and socioeconomic and institutional characteristics which influence a fanner's capacity to apply the decisions at the farm level. The principal objective of this study is to analyze the factors influencing the technical efficiency of coffee fanners in Githunguri Division, Kiambu district. This study analyses the factors influencing the technical efficiency amongst coffee farmers using a translog stochastic production frontier function. The data used was collected from a sample of 100 small scale. farmers and 40 coffee plantation fanners during the 2007 crop year. The estimated efficiencies are then explained by socioeconomic and demographic factors. The mean technical efficiency index between the large-scale farms and small-scale farms is estimated at 97% and 93% respectively. The findings prove that that further productivity gains linked to improvement of technical efficiency may still be realized in coffee production in Githunguri Division. It is shown that education, credit accessibility, system of cultivation and household members contributes positively towards the improvement of efficiency. These results therefore suggest that if more resources are invested in these socioeconomic factors, then there will be an improvement in technical efficiency of fanners in Githunguri Division.