Main Article Content
Banana; farmers; waste management; welfare; Kenya
Horticultural waste management is global war that must be won particularly in Kenya. Utilisation of banana waste can mitigate the dwindling welfare of banana farmers in Kakamega County. Unlike India’s preferred processing approach, on-farm management of banana waste was a cost-effective strategy compatible to Kenya given the Climate change and Covid-19 pandemics. Unfortunately, knowledge on fitting 7Rs denoted by reducing, rethinking, refusing, recycling, reusing, repairing and refilling strategy onto the banana waste generated; banana waste utilisation technologies; and challenges of on-farm banana waste management was scanty in Kakamega County. Therefore, this paper examined the influence of cost-effective banana waste management on the welfare of banana farmers in Kakamega County, Kenya. It particularly established the: on-farm and off-farm weight of banana waste; appropriate innovative on-farm banana waste utilisation; and on-farm banana waste management challenges experienced in Kakamega County, Kenya. Across sectional design was adopted. A purposive sample of 150 from 600 banana farmers with at least 100 banana plants was studied. Frequency tables and plates were used to analyse data Kakamega County. Primary data was complemented by Key informants and secondary sources. The results revealed that out of the 7Rs, reuse, reduce and refill (3Rs) facilitated banana waste management. The weights of peeled banana fruit and waste were 10.1% and 89.9% of the entire banana plant respectively. Banana waste was the driver of integrated organic innovative crop farming, animal husbandry and agro-forestry. Dogmatic beliefs and low agricultural innovation adoption rate hindered banana waste utilization. It is concluded that 7Rs minimized the quantity; enhanced utilization; and mitigated challenges of banana waste, culminating to the improved welfare of banana farmers. Adoption of optimal innovative cleaner banana production technologies to streamline the 7Rs was recommended to achieve sustainable banana waste management and improve livelihoods in Kenya.