MAPPING GENDER CONCERNS IN CUT-FLOWER VALUE CHAINS IN KENYA

L.C. Miriti, D.M. Gikaara, J. Gitonga, M.M. Waiganjo
The cut flower industry is one of Kenya’s fastest growing foreign exchange earners. The industry is dominated by large-scale sophisticated outfits, growing mainly flowers in greenhouses. Employer-employee relations in flower plantations at times develop in the context of infringement of human, social, and labour rights. Recurrent problems such as exposure to toxic chemicals without appropriate protective gear and employment terms are rarely addressed. Consequently, women who are normally employed as unskilled workers in flower production greenhouses are more vulnerable. In order to change the prevailing inequality and allow equal relations in flower industry, it is necessary to understand details of the current situation. The study aimed at mapping existing data on gender concerns in cut flower sub-sector, with the view of offering suggestions for establishment of proactive gender policies and gender mainstreaming frameworks. Secondary sources of data were used to gather information. A combination of library/internet search and desk study was used to ensure exhaustion of access to existing data. The contents of the documents accessed were analysed systematically to reveal the key dimensions presented in the data. This study traced a wide range of gender concerns covering four main themes; gender rights and participation, gender and employment, gender and sexual harassment and gender in small holder flower value chain. For the code of conduct to be effective, it must be gender sensitive with a continual process of awareness raising and improvement with an ultimate aim of fostering a work environment where the social and economic rights of workers are respected. This requires an education process of management and workers on recognising that improving labour conditions through gender sensitive policies and frameworks would enhance productivity and quality of work. It is in the interest of all stakeholders, including the government, trade unions, workers, among others, to ensure that this occurs.
Miriti, L.C., Gikaara, D.M., Gitonga, J. and Waiganjo, M.M. (2015). MAPPING GENDER CONCERNS IN CUT-FLOWER VALUE CHAINS IN KENYA. Acta Hortic. 1077, 95-104
DOI: 10.17660/ActaHortic.2015.1077.9
https://doi.org/10.17660/ActaHortic.2015.1077.9
flowers, Kenya, existing data, gender relations, large scale
English

Acta Horticulturae