Milk production and marketing channel decisions of smallholder farmers in the Zambian milk value chain
African Economic Research Consortium
Dairy farming is a source of livelihood and a major income source for many of the rural Zambian farmers. The importance of the dairy sector cannot be overemphasised as its development has capacity to increase job creation and wealth generation. The sector makes insurmountable contributions to the nutrition status of the country and to the financial gains to the various value chain stakeholders. In an attempt to further develop these financial gains, several initiatives have been developed to encourage smallholder farmers’ participation in the sector, and more so, for women and the youth. Nonetheless, there is still low participation by these interest groups. This study aims to understand the factors that influence smallholder farmers’ decisions to participate in the Zambian dairy value chain, and particularly in terms of milk production and the selection of different marketing channels. The objectives of the study are therefore to: (i) determine the factors that influence smallholder farmers’ decisions to participate in milk production and the factors that influence milk volumes or milk production in Zambia, (ii) identify the factors influencing the choice of milk marketing channels among smallholder farmers in the Zambian milk value chain, and (iii) examine the characteristics of the youth and women in the milk production, as they compare with the characteristics of the control groups (non-youths and men).
Milk production, milk-value chain, marketing channels, smallholder farmers, youth participation, female participation, Zambia.