Gender roles in a dairy value chain in Uasin Gishu County, Kenya
This paper discusses the gender roles in a dairy value. It builds from an assumption that women are confined in the lower levels of the value chain where daily routine work is performed and no income is realized at these levels while men are mostly involved in the higher levels where income is generated for example in the sale of milk. A part from being confined in the levels that do not generate income, women are also not allowed to share equally in the proceeds despite their active involvement in most of the activities along the dairy value chain. This is because their contribution is not visible by the other stakeholders in the industry. From the research, there is evidence that women are being recognized as equal players and their roles being recognized. Women are now engaged in activities that generate income like selling of milk. The paper also looks at how the society looks at the various activities along the dairy value chain in terms of cultural beliefs, taboos and other restrictions and how these beliefs impact on the gender roles in a dairy value chain. Research showed that there are some men who do not do certain activities because it is a taboo in their culture. Others felt that some jobs are demeaning and therefore, not fit for them. In terms of decision making, women are actively involved since they are in joint ownership of property with their husbands. This is an improvement from what was previously known where women were seen as property custodians and not owners. The paper makes a conclusion that women’s roles in the society are being recognized and appreciated and suggests that more opportunities and resources should be given to women to achieve gender equity in a dairy value chain.