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Determinants for Use of Certified Maize Seed and the Relative Importance of Transaction Costs


  • Bernard, Munyua
  • Hellin, Jonathan
  • Nyikal, Rose Adhiambo
  • Mburu, John G.


The rising world prices for major tradable staples such as maize have been a concern for sub- Saharan countries such as Kenya which are maize deficit countries. Maize is a major staple food for over 80 percent of Kenya’s population. Kenya relies on maize for up to 40 percent of its dietary energy supply and is accordingly searching for ways to increase maize productivity. Maize productivity has been rising in the last decade manly as a result of the use of improved germplasm and fertilizer. However, the proportion of farmers using these technologies is low and the aggregate productivity in maize is low compared to other countries and its potential. Previous studies on input adoption have often assumed the existence of perfect supply and product markets, tending to ignore the important but significant role played by institutions as well as the role of transaction costs associated with market exchange. This study makes use of qualitative information from institutions and actors in seed input value chains as well as quantitative information collected from a sample of 150 farmers, in the Moist Transitional Maize Zones of Kenya. A two stage regression model was applied to analyze determinants of adoption and factors affecting degree of adoption of certified improved maize seed. The results show that as farmers adopt certified seeds, they incur higher transaction costs than non adopters, rural infrastructure, social capital such as membership in groups and trust play an important role in the decision of whether or not to use certified seed.

Suggested Citation

  • Bernard, Munyua & Hellin, Jonathan & Nyikal, Rose Adhiambo & Mburu, John G., 2010. "Determinants for Use of Certified Maize Seed and the Relative Importance of Transaction Costs," 2010 AAAE Third Conference/AEASA 48th Conference, September 19-23, 2010, Cape Town, South Africa 96423, African Association of Agricultural Economists (AAAE);Agricultural Economics Association of South Africa (AEASA).
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:aaae10:96423

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Anonymous, 2001. "Cimmyt 1999-2000 World Maize Facts And Trends: Meeting World Maize Needs: Technological Opportunities And Priorities For The Public Sector," Facts and Trends/Overview and Outlook 23727, CIMMYT: International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center.
    2. Kaliba, Aloyce R. & Verkuijl, Hugo & Mwangi, Wilfred, 2000. "Factors Affecting Adoption Of Improved Maize Seeds And Use Of Inorganic Fertilizer For Maize Production In The Intermediate And Lowland Zones Of Tanzania," Journal of Agricultural and Applied Economics, Southern Agricultural Economics Association, vol. 32(01), April.
    3. Adesina, Akinwumi A. & Zinnah, Moses M., 1993. "Technology characteristics, farmers' perceptions and adoption decisions: A Tobit model application in Sierra Leone," Agricultural Economics, Blackwell, vol. 9(4), pages 297-311, December.
    4. Jayne, Thomas S. & Yamano, Takashi & Nyoro, James K. & Awuor, Tom, 2000. "Do Farmers Really Benefit from High Food Prices? Balancing Rural Interests in Kenya's Maize Pricing and Marketing Policy," Food Security Collaborative Policy Briefs 54641, Michigan State University, Department of Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics.
    5. Alex Winter-Nelson & Anna Temu, 2005. "Impacts of prices and transactions costs on input usage in a liberalizing economy: evidence from Tanzanian coffee growers," Agricultural Economics, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 33(3), pages 243-253, November.
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    7. Winter-Nelson, Alex & Temu, Anna, 2002. "Institutional Adjustment and Transaction Costs: Product and Inputs Markets in the Tanzanian Coffee System," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 30(4), pages 561-574, April.
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    9. Doss, Cheryl R. & Mwangi, Wilfred & Verkuijl, Hugo & De Groote, Hugo, 2003. "Adoption Of Maize And Wheat Technologies In Eastern Africa: A Synthesis Of The Findings Of 22 Case Studies," Economics Working Papers 46522, CIMMYT: International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center.
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    Cited by:

    1. Shikuku, Kelvin M. & Largerkvist, Carl Johan & Okello, Julius J. & Karanja, Nancy & Ackello-Ogutu, Chris, 2013. "Assessment of the influence of attitude and benefit-risk perceptions on yield variability among smallholder peri-urban commercial kale farmers in Wangige, Kenya," 2013 AAAE Fourth International Conference, September 22-25, 2013, Hammamet, Tunisia 161283, African Association of Agricultural Economists (AAAE).
    2. Gitonga, Zachary M. & De Groote, Hugo, 2016. "Role of hybrid maize adoption on food security in Kenya: an application of two-step generalized method of moments (gmm2s)," 2016 AAAE Fifth International Conference, September 23-26, 2016, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia 246315, African Association of Agricultural Economists (AAAE).

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