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Name: James Mumo

Postion: Enumerator
UniCARSSA field survey challenges
UniCARSSA baseline survey was conducted in two selected counties; Bungoma and
Siaya from 4/2/2019 to 16/2/2019 with an objective of understanding agricultural and
food security situations in the counties. Survey also assessed farmers on their
perception towards current climate and environmental change matters.

In addition to the questionnaire participants also discussed the following issues as


challenges limiting their production.

Respondents cited following challenges

1. Market- about 40% of the visited groups in Bungoma and Siaya claimed to have
participated in past research/projects which were advocating for the production
of one or more of UniCARSSA target crops, but the participants were
disappointed that after mass production of crops like sorghum there were no
market to sell. this left most farmers stranded and desperate as they have no
methods of processing sorghum and unlike maize which can be used directly to
pay for dependents school fees sorghum had to be left in stores.
2. Seeds- participants in Bungoma who seemed to have experience of climate,
environmental degradation and soil fertility decline in their regions, proposed
availability and accessibility of improved seed varieties of the four crops, which
can withstand the changes. They cited failure of the unimproved varieties as a
factor of soil fertility, erratic rainfall, and increased drought.
3. Perceptions- Sorghum production is not popular in Bungoma because farmers
have negative believes towards the crop production impact on the soil fertility.
Most of the respondents claimed to have experienced severe fertility decline, and
appearance of new weeds in the fields previously under sorghum production.
4. Young farmers contributed very little information in terms of experiences
targeted by the questionnaire; for instance, they had less experience on matters of
climate change and extreme weather events.
Technical Challenges

 Intercropping- about 90% of the farmers who participated in the survey practice
intercropping, and thus difficult to estimate the exact piece of land under specific
crop production as per questionnaire requirement.
 Answer options given on the questions which targeted farmers perception on
temperature, rainfall and soil fertility are uniform and creates boredom during
questionnaire administration, options are not connected to the questions, for
instance, water availability impact, pests and diseases should have been given
specific optional answers.
 Use of bread and towel as a standard estimate of poverty index seem to be
obsolete and local options should be adapted for future questionnaires.