Comparative Analysis of Maize Storage Structures in Kenya

This paper assesses the feasibility of the maize storage structures used in Kenya. Maize is the most important staple crop, but produced seasonally, and consumed continuously at farm level, hence the need for on-farm storage. However, heavy post harvest losses occur mainly during harvesting and storage stages and these are a cost to the farmer. A cost benefit analysis was employed to evaluate the viability of ten maize storage structures. The results showed that, apart from the in-house storage and the traditional crib, the benefit-cost ratio (BCR) of the other structures was greater than one. The net present value (NPV) at 15 percent discount rate ranged from KSh 25 to KSh 40 for a kilogram stored in the traditional granary and the metal silo respectively. The internal rate of return (IRR) results were compared to a market interest rate of 15 percent and only the separate structure, improved granary (wicker wall), the basket and the metal silo were feasible with IRRs of 19.3, 23.3, 27.2 and 59.6 percent respectively. The payback period (PBP) ranged from three to 16 months for the metal silo and traditional crib respectively. Sensitivity analysis with a ten percent cost increment and up to 50 percent price reduction showed that only the metal silo was viable although it is the least used maize storage structure. Farmers have an opportunity to shift from the traditional storage methods to upcoming technologies like the metal silo and reduce their maize storage costs and losses.

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 Record created 2017-04-01, last modified 2017-08-22

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