Food Security

, Volume 8, Issue 1, pp 239–253 | Cite as

Determinants of child nutritional status in the eastern province of Zambia: the role of improved maize varieties

  • Julius MandaEmail author
  • Cornelis Gardebroek
  • Makaiko G. Khonje
  • Arega D. Alene
  • Munyaradzi Mutenje
  • Menale Kassie
Original Paper


Using household survey data from a sample of 810 households, this paper analyses the determinants of children’s nutritional status and evaluates the impacts of improved maize varieties on child malnutrition in eastern Zambia. The paper uses an endogenous switching regression technique, combined with propensity score matching, to assess the determinants of child malnutrition and impacts of improved maize varieties on nutritional status. The study finds that child nutrition worsens with the age of the child and improves with education of household head and female household members, number of adult females in the household, and access to better sanitation. The study also finds a robust and significant impact of improved maize varieties on child malnutrition. The empirical results indicate that adoption of improved maize varieties reduces the probability of stunting by an average of about 26 %.


Children’s nutritional status Stunting Endogenous switching probit Zambia 



The authors gratefully acknowledge financial support from the USAID Zambia Mission (USAID/Zambia). The household survey was conducted in collaboration with the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock of Zambia and the Zambia Agricultural Research Institute (ZARI). We thank Bernadette Chimai of the University of Zambia who ably supervised the data collection process. We are grateful to three anonymous referees and the Editor-in-Chief of this journal for their comments on an earlier draft of the paper.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht and International Society for Plant Pathology 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Julius Manda
    • 1
    Email author
  • Cornelis Gardebroek
    • 2
  • Makaiko G. Khonje
    • 1
  • Arega D. Alene
    • 1
  • Munyaradzi Mutenje
    • 3
  • Menale Kassie
    • 4
  1. 1.International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA)LilongweMalawi
  2. 2.Agricultural Economics and Rural Policy GroupWageningen UniversityWageningenThe Netherlands
  3. 3.The International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT)HarareZimbabwe
  4. 4.The International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT)NairobiKenya

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