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Applying the Theory of Access to Food Security among Smallholder Family Farmers around North-West Mount Kenya

by 1,3,*, 1,2,3 and 1,3
1
Institute of Geography, University of Bern, 3012 Bern, Switzerland
2
UNESCO Chair on Cultural and Natural Heritage and Sustainable Mountain Development, University of Bern, 3012 Bern, Switzerland
3
Centre for Development and Environment, University of Bern, 3012 Bern, Switzerland
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Sustainability 2020, 12(5), 1751; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12051751
Received: 31 January 2020 / Revised: 20 February 2020 / Accepted: 22 February 2020 / Published: 26 February 2020
(This article belongs to the Section Sustainable Agriculture)
Access to productive resources such as land and water is fundamental for households that rely on crop and livestock production for their livelihoods. Research often assumes that agricultural production—and thus, food security—are favoured by tenure security of resources (as represented by a “bundle of property rights”). However, research has not yet elucidated how food security is influenced by additional factors, represented within a “bundle of powers”. Guided by the Theory of Access developed by Ribot and Peluso, we explore the main factors in the respective bundles of rights and powers that influence household food security around north-west Mount Kenya. We interviewed 76 households—38 food secure and 38 food insecure—who were subsampled from a previous food security survey of 380 households. Results show that household food insecurity was not exclusively the result of a lack of private property rights as many farmers had retained their property rights. Instead, a major factor preventing access to productive resources was the difficulty faced by food insecure households in accessing farm technology (i.e. hand tools and implements). Access to authority and via social relations were significantly correlated with access to technology, so improving the latter must take into account the former. View Full-Text
Keywords: access; food security; smallholders; Kenya; Mount Kenya; farm technology; theory of access access; food security; smallholders; Kenya; Mount Kenya; farm technology; theory of access
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MDPI and ACS Style

Mutea, E.; Rist, S.; Jacobi, J. Applying the Theory of Access to Food Security among Smallholder Family Farmers around North-West Mount Kenya. Sustainability 2020, 12, 1751. https://doi.org/10.3390/su12051751

AMA Style

Mutea E, Rist S, Jacobi J. Applying the Theory of Access to Food Security among Smallholder Family Farmers around North-West Mount Kenya. Sustainability. 2020; 12(5):1751. https://doi.org/10.3390/su12051751

Chicago/Turabian Style

Mutea, Emily; Rist, Stephan; Jacobi, Johanna. 2020. "Applying the Theory of Access to Food Security among Smallholder Family Farmers around North-West Mount Kenya" Sustainability 12, no. 5: 1751. https://doi.org/10.3390/su12051751

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