The Ambivalent Impact of Coffee Certification on Farmers' Welfare: A Matched Panel Approach for Cooperatives in Central Kenya

Bart van Rijsbergen, Willem Elbers, Ruerd Ruben, Samuel N. Njuguna*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

55 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Certification is promoted to improve rural welfare through better market access and improved agricultural practices. We compare net effects of Fairtrade- and Utz-Certified coffee production in Central Kenya, using a matched panel from 218 farm-households that belong to three cooperatives and were visited twice in 2009 and 2013. We distinguish between effects at field, farm, household, cooperative, community, and market levels. Both certification regimes improved coffee returns, but Fairtrade was more effective in coffee processing, whereas Utz contributed to productivity. Under stagnating coffee prices, Fairtrade farmers increased their coffee specialization, while Utz farmers reduced coffee areas but increased yield.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)277-292
Number of pages16
JournalWorld Development
Volume77
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2016

Keywords

  • Certification
  • Coffee
  • Cooperatives
  • Kenya
  • Panel data

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