Utilization of Post-Harvest Technologies for Improved Food Security: Case of Maize and Mangoes among Smallholder Farmers in Kerio Valley Elgeyo Marakwet County, Kenya
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Limited availability of improved post-harvest technologies or inappropriate use of available technologies leads to spoilage of food resulting to post-harvest losses. The losses contribute to food insecurity in the sense that availability and accessibility of food will be limited. Adoption of post-harvest harvest technologies boosts the agricultural sector, and has been seen as a pathway out of poverty and food insecurity. The study assessed the utilization of post-harvest technologies among smallholder farmers in Kerio Valley Elgeyo Marakwet County, Kenya and their correlation to food security. The main objective of the study was to determine factors that influenced adoption of post-harvest technologies for both maize and mango among the farmers. A cross sectional survey was used to collect data using self-administered questionnaire and interview schedules on 217 respondents. There was a significant relationship between gender (r- .264, P<0.001), age(r=.350, P<.05), education level(r=.956, P<.001), income(r=656, P<.001) and extension services(r=.907, P<.001) and adoption of post-harvest technologies. Adoption and use of improved post-harvest and processing technologies need to be promoted to curb post-harvest losses thus improving food security. In addition, there is need for intense extension services on post-harvest technologies to enhance awareness and adoption.
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