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Innovations for Poverty Action (IPA) 2013

Measuring the Demand for Aflatoxin Tested Maize in Kenya

Aflatoxin Maize

Innovations for Poverty Action

Titre : Measuring the Demand for Aflatoxin Tested Maize in Kenya

Région /Pays : Kenya

Date : 2013-2015

Maize is the staple for 96 percent of Kenya’s 40 million people,3 and is the primary source of aflatoxin exposure in that country. The legally allowable level of aflatoxin contamination in food for human consumption set by the Kenyan regulatory authority is no more than 10 parts per billion. However, one study by Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) scientists showed that 65 percent of maize samples collected from 20 major millers did not meet the national standard.4 The Cereal Millers Association (CMA) of Kenya has expressed strong interest in improving food safety standards in the maize-processing sector and IPA is partnering with one of their member companies for this study. The study is taking place within the current distribution network of the miller and includes Machakos, Kitui, Nairobi, Meru, Embu, Nyeri and Murang’a counties. Machakos and Kitui have a particularly high incidence of aflatoxin contamination in maize.

The two-year study evaluates whether there is sufficient demand in the Kenyan market for aflatoxin-tested flour and how demand for the flour might be stimulated. It involves working closely with a miller and 72 small shops and supermarkets to produce and market a flour that has been tested, labeled, and verifed by a third party as aflatoxin-free.
Working with the Texas A&M Agrilife Research Office of the Texas State Chemist through the Aflatoxin Proficiency Testing for Eastern and Central Africa (APTECA) program, IPA will monitor collaborating millers’ compliance with the APTECA protocol. Texas A&M AgriLife Research will verify the accuracy of the aflatoxin test results at their accredited laboratory in Nairobi.
The research team will begin collecting sales data from 72 shops before the tested maize flour is officially launched and will continue tracking sales for the duration of the study. One-third of shops in the study will display a poster explaining the aflatoxin-safe label, with no discounting or additional promotion. Consumer response to safety labeling of flour at these shops will inform researchers about the impact of such labeling under typical market conditions.
Two-thirds of shops, 48 in total, will be randomly assigned to receive leaflets promoting the tested flour for a week at the time the tested flour is launched. At half of these shops, leafleting will be repeated at four-week intervals (intensive marketing). Through this marketing intervention, researchers aim to evaluate the impact of information on consumer behavior over three distinct time periods : during, weeks after, and several months after an informational campaign.
Half of the shops assigned to the marketing intervention (including half of those assigned to receive intensive marketing) will also be assigned to a discount group. These shops will be asked to offer customers a one-month discount for the tested, labeled, flour at the time the product is launched. This will allow researchers to measure the long-term impact of temporary discounts on consumer behavior over the longer-term.
Customers at each participating shop will be interviewed before the intervention and nearby market where unbranded flour is sold and again at the end of the study period about their purchases. This customer-level data will complement the shop-level data on sales and shed light on the socio-economic profile of customers who purchase the tested flour in each treatment group

Partenaires  : International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) ; Western Michigan University (WMU) ; Global Center for Food Systems Innovation (GCFSI) International Food Policy Research Institute Osho Grain Millers Texas A&M Agrilife Research

Innovation for Poverty Action (IPA)

Page publiée le 5 juillet 2017, mise à jour le 22 novembre 2017