Assessing the Status of Social Media Familiarity among Smallholder Farmers: A Case Study of Thika, Kiambu Kenya

Anne W. Kimani, Hillary T. Nyang’anga, John I. Mburu

Abstract


Social media provides huge opportunities and incentives that could ease promotion of agricultural extension, facilitate real-time service delivery and enable wider farmer coverage. Ineffective dissemination approaches, expanding farmer population, low staffing, and aging agricultural extension agents continue to negatively affect the provision of agricultural extension services in Kenya. Despite the social media potential in agricultural communication, lack of awareness and low usage in the rural areas of developing countries have been documented. This study sought to establish the level of social media familiarity among smallholder rural farmers with the aim of exploring the possibility of usage in agricultural extension. The study was undertaken in Thika Sub-County of Kiambu County on 140 farmers through a researcher administered semi-structured questionnaire. Probability-proportional-to-size sampling method was employed to derive the sample size from existing extension farmer groups. Simple random sampling technique was further used to identify the actual respondents from each group. A low level of social media familiarity was established among the farmers with education, age and gender having significant influence. The study recommends awareness creation initiatives to promote social media familiarity with a particular focus on women who form the bulk of the farmers but with the lowest level of social media knowledge.  


Keywords


Social media; familiarity; agricultural extension; smallholder farmers; information

Full Text:

PDF XPS

References


Afande, F. O., Maina, W. N., & Mathenge, P. M. (2015). Youth Engagement in Agriculture in Kenya: Challenges and Prospects. Journal of Culture, Society, and Development, 7.

Andres, D., & Woodard, J. (2013). Social Media Handbook for Agricultural Development Practitioners. The U.S. Agency for International Development.

Chisenga, J., Kedemi, R., & Sam, J. (2014). The Use of Social Media in Agricultural Research Workflows in Ghana and Kenya. An International Journal For Information Specialists In Agriculture, Natural Resources, And The Environment, 48-57.

Cornelisse, S., Hyde, J., Raines, C., & Kelley, K. (2011). Entrepreneurial Extension conducted via social media. Journal of Extension,, 49(6).

FAO. (2015). Retrieved from Food and Agriculture Organization: http://www.fao.org/nr/research-extension-systems/res-home/en/

Food & Agriculture Organization. (2011). Women in Agriculture: Closing the gender gap for Development. Rome: Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, ISBN 978-92-5-106768-0.

GoK. (2012). National Agricultural Sector Extension Policy (NASEP). Agricultural Sector Coordination Unit (ASCU).

Jijina, C. K., & Raju, G. (2016). Social Media and Farmers. International Journal of Research in Engineering and Technology.

KALRO. (2017). Strategic Plan 2017-2021. Nairobi: Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organization, ISBN: 978-9966-30-032-4.

Kipkurgat, T., Onyiego, M., & Chemwaina, S. (2016). Impact of Social Media on Agricultural Extension in Kenya: A Case of Kesses District. International Journal of Agricultural Extension and Rural Development Studies,. 3, 1, 30-36.

KIPPRA. (2017). Kenya Economic Report: Sustaining Kenya’s Economic Development by Deepening and Expanding Economic Integration in the Region. Nairobi: Kenya Institute for Public Policy Research and Analysis.

Oto, J. O., & Shimayohol, D. (2011). Extension communication channels' usage and preference by farmers in Benue State, Nigeria. Journal of Agricultural Extension and Rural Development, 3(5), 88-94.

Rhoades, E., & Aue, K. (2010). Social agriculture: Adoption of social media by agricultural editors and broadcasters. Paper presented at 107th Annual Meeting and Conference of Southern Association of Agricultural Scientists. Orlando, Florida.

SOFA & Doss. (2011). The role of women in agriculture. ESA Working Paper No. 11-02. Agricultural Development Economics Division. Rome, Italy: The FA) of the United Nations.

Wabwoba, M. S., & Wakhungu, J. W. (2013). Factors affecting the sustainability of community food security projects in Kiambu County. Agriculture & Food Security, 2:9.




DOI: https://doi.org/10.33687/ijae.007.01.2732

Refbacks

  • There are currently no refbacks.


Copyright (c) 2019 International Journal of Agricultural Extension

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.

 

 

  

International Journal of Agricultural Extension

ISSN: 2311-6110 (Online), 2311-8547 (Print)

© ESci Journals Publishing. All Rights Reserved.