A Success Story of Organizing Small Scale Farmers in Kenya: It's Possible Replication for the Payment of Environmental Services?

Mogens Buch-Hansen

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    Managing agricultural landscapes for reducing carbon dioxide emissions is believed to be a Payment for Environmental Services mechanism (PES) of major significance after the 2012 Kyoto Protocol era. The big number of small scale farmers in the developing countries, and not least in SSA, will through this have a chance to contribute to national development, but to also enhance their own livelihood. The big problem of relying on small scale farmers is an organization model that ensures endurance and reliability. The Kenya Tea Development Agency (KTDA) has through almost 50 years been successful in integrating 600.000 smallholders in the tea production making tea number one income earner in Kenya and enhancing the livelihoods of the involved contract growers. The article argues that lessons should be learned from the success of KTDA in possibly replicating the organizational model to other crops, but not least to be used in PES schemes. The article emphasizes vertical integration and production diversification, enabling market conditions, and democratization as the main factors in KTDA’s success that could possibly be replicated in promoting small scale farmers participating in the post-Kyoto carbon trade.
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalThe Open Geography Journal
    Pages (from-to)59-67
    Number of pages9
    Publication statusPublished - 24 Jul 2012

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