Farmers’ Information Literacy and Productivity Performance of Smallholder Horticulture in a Highland Zone, Kenya

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Nelly Chebet Sang
Joseph Kipkorir Cheruiyot


The horticulture sub-sector contributes substantially to the Kenyan economy, but smallholder productivity is low. This study investigated the role of information literacy on smallholder horticultural productivity performance in a lower highland zone of Belgut Sub-county, Kericho County, Kenya. The study used descriptive cross-sectional survey design. Data were collected between January and April 2019. Smallholder horticulture farmers who previously participated in a program; NALEP, in Belgut Sub-county were purposely selected and interviewed. Data was collected from 31 respondents through face-to-face household interviews using pre-tested semi-structured interview schedules and analyzed using Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) version 20. Descriptive statistics were utilized to document the farmers’ information sources. Associations between attributes were analyzed by running Goodman and Kruskals’ gamma and Somers’ d. Findings indicated that the smallholder horticulture farmers obtained horticultural information mostly from the public extension, but also from private companies, NGOs/FBOs, mass media, and other farmers. Farmers’ level of formal education, organizational skills, accounting, and farming skills; as indicators of information literacy, showed moderate strength of relationship with productivity and profitability (Gamma = 0.200 to 0.563) but showed mixed strength with horticultural produce quality (Gamma = 0.138 to 0.948).Somers delta showed similar patterns (Somers d = 0.089 to 0.684). When the four indicators of information literacy were amalgamated into an information literacy score, there was evidence of a moderate strength monotonic relationship between information literacy and performance as measured by the Spearman rank correlation; rs (29) = .571, P = .001.The study concludes that farmers obtain horticultural information from diverse sources. Information literacy contributes to the productivity and profitability of smallholder horticulture. Capacity building of the farmers on information literacy is recommended.

Information literacy, smallholder, horticulture, productivity, profitability, Kenya

Article Details

How to Cite
Sang, N. C., & Cheruiyot, J. K. (2020). Farmers’ Information Literacy and Productivity Performance of Smallholder Horticulture in a Highland Zone, Kenya. Journal of Scientific Research and Reports, 26(6), 89-99.
Original Research Article


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