Does Global-GAP policy reduce smallholder greenhouse gas emissions from French bean production in Central and Eastern regions of Kenya?

The need to minimize farm-level greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from Kenya’s smallholder French bean production is gaining increased attention. French beam production has over the years adopted private voluntary standards notably Global-GAP that regulates both environmental and food safety aspects among farmers. Despite increasing global warming concerns, the impact of Global-GAP policy on smallholder farmers’ GHG emissions is unclear. This paper documents effects of Global-GAP policy on GHG emissions among French bean farmers in Central and Eastern regions of Kenya using household data collected between September and October 2013 from a random sample of 616 farmers. The study used a combined linear programming (LP) and life cycle assessment (LCA) models to examine the economic and environmental metrics and ordinary least squares (OLS) regression method to analyze factors affecting farm-level GHG emissions. Eco-efficiency, defined as net farm income divided by global warming potential, was used as an integrated indicator for assessing the economic and environmental feasibilities. There was a significant (p>0.05) higher eco-efficiency in Kenya Shillings per ton of carbon dioxide equivalence (Kshs per tCO2e) among Global-GAP policy complying farmers compared to non-complying farmers due to a reduced GWP (by 7 percent) and a higher net farm income given the optimum activity level used. The Global-GAP regulatory measures on the management practices seems to have caused economic advantage in exchange for environmental advantage (lower emissions in tCO2e by 7 percent). The regression model results found that Global-GAP compliance negatively and significantly affect GHG emissions. It further found that region of the farmer, French bean yields, gasoline fuel use, DAP fertilizer application and French bean seed positively and significantly affected smallholder farmer’ GHG emissions. More explicitly, the model using these explanatory variables indicates that smallholder farmers complying with Global-GAP policy are more likely to emit less GHG compared to non-complying farmers. The paper recommends inclusion of Global-GAP compliance and these other significant socio-economic factors in the smallholder French bean greenhouse gas emission reduction strategies by the government and industry stakeholders.

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 Record created 2017-04-01, last modified 2018-01-23

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