Sweet potato is a traditional crop grown in most parts of Kenya. In Nyanza Region, Kisii County and Mosocho sub-county in particular are major producers of the crop. However, only less than half of the produce is marketed and the growers are largely poverty stricken. This paper investigates why so little of the produce is marketed. Using primary data collected from a survey of 108 farmers in Mosocho, the study estimates a logit model to explain the factors that influence commercialization of sweet potatoes in the area. Results show that poor market information for the many farmers who are not members of any cooperative society, limited non-farm incomes, and urbanization are the major factors constraining commercialization of the root crop. Interventions that promote cooperatives and rural industrialization could go a long way in boosting trade in sweet potatoes.
Key words: Sweet potato, commercialization, smallholder farms, logit model, Mosocho, Kenya.
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