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Has Kenyan Farmers’ Access to Markets and Services Improved? Panel Survey Evidence, 1997-2007


Author Info

  • Chamberlin, Jordan
  • Jayne, Thomas S.


This report uses panel data on 1,267 smallholder households to monitor changes in their access to markets and services. We find that Kenyan smallholders’ proximity to infrastructure, markets, and services has improved markedly over the last decade. These improvements, however, have not been uniformly distributed over either time or space. Farmers in high-potential areas of the country continue to enjoy closer proximity to most kinds of markets and services compared to low-potential areas, but the greatest relative improvements over the 1997-2007 period have been in areas of medium and low potential. We also distinguish between public and private investments in examining changes in smallholders’ access to markets. Changes deriving from public investments have tended to be most geographically equitable; private investments appear to have been relatively concentrated in the less productive farming areas of the country, possibly because earlier investments focused on high-potential areas, leaving unexploited investment opportunities in the less productive areas. These changes in smallholders’ access to markets may offer important insights about the private sector’s response to market liberalization in recent Kenyan history.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Michigan State University, Department of Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics in its series Food Security Collaborative Working Papers with number 58545.

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Date of creation: Oct 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ags:midcwp:58545

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Related research

Keywords: Kenya; markets; food security; Africa; Agricultural and Food Policy; Community/Rural/Urban Development; Food Security and Poverty; International Relations/Trade; Marketing; q18; q13;

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Cited by:
  1. Olwande, John & Smale, Melinda, 2012. "Is Older Better? Maize Hybrid Change on Household Farms in Kenya," 2012 Conference, August 18-24, 2012, Foz do Iguacu, Brazil 126669, International Association of Agricultural Economists.
  2. Smale, Melinda, 2011. "Does Household Headship Affect Demand for Hybrid Maize Seed in Kenya? An Exploratory Analysis Based on 2010 Survey Data," Food Security International Development Working Papers 118475, Michigan State University, Department of Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics.


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