The key factors affecting tree producer associations involved in private commercial forestry in Kenya

Sylvester Ngome Chisika, Chunho Yeom

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Formal tree producer associations are critical for the sustainable management of private commercial farm forests in Kenya. However, there is limited information on their current status and the key factors driving their operations in the country. This paper sought to address this informational gap by reviewing the existing literature in the country from the theoretical background of sustainable development and later validating the obtained findings with the current state of knowledge at regional and global levels. Results from document content analysis indicate that there are over 10,000 tree growing farmers organized into planting groups across the country after many years of piloting by the government and private sector players. At the national level, there are two associations. These include Kenya Forest Growers Association (KEFGA), mainly composed of large scale planters, and Farm Forestry Smallholder Producers Association of Kenya (FFSPAK), targeting small-holders. Besides these two, six major sub-national associations are seeking to improve members' welfare by enhancing the acquisition of livelihood assets. Further, various socio-cultural, economic, and political factors affect their operations in Kenya. These associations have deployed multiple strategies to benefit their members. However, the formation of savings and credit cooperative societies (SACCOs) seems to be their preferred mode of community empowerment. In conclusion, even though these associations are still at the infancy stage, their future remains promising in-view of the observed behavioral change in their governance, which appears to favor entrenched equality and equity towards sustainable development.

Original languageEnglish
Article number4013
JournalSustainability (Switzerland)
Issue number10
StatePublished - 1 May 2020


  • Equality
  • Equity
  • Livelihoods
  • Private commercial forests
  • Sustainability
  • Tree producer associations


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