The Relationship between Adoption of Coffee Certification Standards and Productivity in Nyeri County in Kenya
Keywords:strategy, productivity, planned change, standards, coffee
Standards have been applied as strategic tools to help organizations increase productivity, and improve competitive advantage. They facilitate free and fair global trade, enhance customer satisfaction through improved quality, open new global markets by preventing trade barriers and increase market share. The objective of this study was to investigate the relationship between adoption of coffee certification standards; Fairtrade, UTZ, and Rainforest Alliance on coffee productivity in Nyeri County. A cross-sectional study design was used to describe the current situation and establish any relationships between adoption of coffee certification standards and productivity. Researcher administered questionnaires were used to collect data from 270 coffee farmers. Stratified random sampling was used to sample the farmers in each agroecological zone. Productivity was defined as kilograms cherry produced per coffee tree. Data on coffee production and marketing activities for the 2013/2014 coffee year was collected and analyzed into descriptive and inferential statistics. Data was analyzed using non- parametric methods after subjecting it to normality test. The productivity populations were significantly different (p=0.008)with ac2 value of 13.82. Fairtrade was the most prevalent standard at 70.7% adoption rate. The mean coffee productivity resulting from adoption of Fairtrade, Rainforest Alliance and UTZ were 6.38, 4.11 and 5.21 kg cherry per tree respectively. The mean effect of certification to Fairtrade on productivity compared to Rainforest Alliance was significantly different (p=0.01). Agro-ecological zoning did not have a significant effect (p=0.67) on coffee productivity. The mean productivity rank for Fairtrade was significantly different (p=0.02) compared to that for non-Fairtrade with mean productivity of 6.21 and 4.39 kg cherry/tree respectively. Fairtrade combined with Rainforest Alliance had a synergistic effect resulting to increased productivity of 6.78kg per tree compared to the individual standards. The recommendations from the study are:promotion of coffee certification standardsto coffee farmersas a way of improving productivity and further researchon the effects of adoption ofothersustainability standards on coffee productivity and on other crops.
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