Understanding the Effect of Land Fragmentation on Farm Level Efficiency: An Application of Quantile Regression-Based Thick Frontier Approach to Maize Production in Kenya

Amidst declining agricultural productivity, farm level efficiency and persistent food security problems in Africa, land fragmentation is emerging as a key empirical and policy question in the region. In this paper, a novel approach is used to estimate the effects of land fragmentation. Quantile Regression-Based Thick Frontier (TFA) is applied to show how the overall change in landholding affects production efficiency in production. Applying cross-sectional survey data from Kenya, the results showed that the least efficient group of maize farmers in Kenya were those with the small average land holding attaining a maximum output of 70% of the actual attainable output. In terms of scale of production, the least efficient group fall short by 58% compared to their large scale peers. This approach is semi-parametric requiring few assumptions with simplified figures easy for policy communication.

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 Record created 2017-04-01, last modified 2017-08-29

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