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Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin - Lebenswissenschaftliche Fakultät - Quarterly Journal of International Agriculture

Quarterly Journal of International Agriculture No. 3/12


Is ICT in Agricultural Extension Feasible in Enhancing Marketing of Agricultural Produce in Kenya:
A Case of Kiambu District

Elizabeth Kabura Nyaga
World Bank Institute, Washington, DC, USA


Abstract

This paper argues that adopting information and communication technology (ICT) in agricultural extension is crucial in facilitating farmers to access new markets for their produce and acquire information on the current trend in agriculture. Agricultural extension has been the main source of information for small scale farmers but it has been faced with setbacks mainly due to past top down extension approaches and lack of adequate resources for field extension agents at the ground level. The extension system does not have updated and a modern mechanism to acquire and deliver information to farmers before it becomes obsolete. Despite these setbacks, the role of both public and private extension in agricultural and rural development in Kenya cannot be ignored. Public extension system has been offering free services to about 70% of the country’s poorest population. This paper, therefore, suggests the need to integrate ICT in agricultural extension to enable producers, extension providers and other stakeholders to access updated information and become competitive.

Keywords: agricultural extension, ICT, Kenya

JEL: R20, Q12, Q13, Q16

Vol. 51 (2012), No. 3: 245-256