Marketing farm supplies in rural areas: a study of farm inputs availability in Totu division
Chege, Fred E.
MetadataShow full item record
The present study presents the results and recommendations stemming from a baseline survey on the nature of marketing farm supplies in Totu Division, Nyori District. The survey was conducted among retail traders in the Division early this year. It was concerned with determining the degree to which crucial farm inputs were available in Division, especially deep within the rural areas. It focussed particularly upon the availability and distribution of those inputs necessary for effective hybrid maize husbandry as an example, paying special attention to the need for repackaging these inputs in smaller quantities and for relabeling them with more meaningful terminology. Other issues investigated include determining the accuracy with which stockists estimate the seasonal purchasing needs of their clients and the degree to which main supplies are engaged in delivering inputs to stockists. Since the present study is a concomitant of the parent study, the Totu Extension Pilot Project, recommendations are cast in the light of this parent study. Thus, the study concludes that the problem of farm supplies in Totu Division may be summarized as undersupply in some areas part of the time, and non-supply in other areas most of the time. This problem is made worse by packaging of some supplies which is too bulky for the needs of many farmers arid package labelling which is product rather than use oriented. One way of overcoming these problems is by extending loans from commercial banking sources to farm supply stockists to enable them to carry a comprehensive and adequate shopping list of supplies. To ensure a steady market and increase predictability of demand, however, the programme should be closely connected with the Totu Extension Pilot Project which is currently experimenting with extending farm input loans to trainee farmers. These loans could be extended as vouchers redeemable in farm supplies from stockists and repayments made into a revolving fund which, in time, might well evolve into a farmer’s credit union.