Avail These Four Kenya Fresh Produce Off Quarter Acre Farms
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In Kenya, the majority of family growers own less than two acres of land. The most productive parts of their farms can sometimes be less than a quarter of an acre. You can take advantage of the fact that certain rare vegetables thrive well in tiny places, yet they yield more than others, per square feet. For instance, mushrooms in a hydroponic farm of 10 by 10 meters square can produce a thousand kilos, in one harvest.
While some of this produce finds its way abroad through brokers, SMEs and direct export, you can also order it through local suppliers. But then, which are these fresh produce that can expand in such a small piece of land? Here is a presentation of the top four of these exports.
Next to poultry, fish farming is one of the more lucrative sources of income for smallholder farmers in Kenya in the animal farming business. Fish qualifies as fresh produce because it does not hatch in wild rivers and lakes but in family-maintained ponds.
The ponds mostly go to a hundred meters square. The common fish types you can find in Kenya ponds include tilapia, dagaa (Nile Perch), and cat fish. Because of the high maintenance costs including food and fiber besides construction materials, a kilo of tilapia goes for about $5 or KSH500. This can adjust marginally when you import due to currency fluctuation and exchange rate.
Mushroom has been, for a long time, a preserve for the West and Asia. But now it has found widespread growth in Kenya courtesy of farming workshops on the need for the crop. It fits in a small piece of land quite snugly, with a a quarter of an acre producing about 2 tons worth of harvests.
Mushrooms thrive in farming bags, inside an incubation facility. This can be enhanced with proper ventilation. The advantage of indoor growth is that mushrooms do not grow to high heights. You can expect a farmer to produce 2 tons with each kilo going for KSH600 or roughly $6. Statistics from the National Farmers Information Service show that annual sales from Kenya of mushrooms amount to 1200 tons.
Another essential fresh produce in the Kenya market is garlic. This onion family member is in big demand in the West and Asia courtesy of its bitter flavor and healthy benefits. Family growers in areas like Meru on the footsteps of Mount Kenya produce around 2500 kilos of garlic in just a quarter of land. The price per kg ranges from KSH150 per kilo to KSH200. This equals to between $1.5 and $2. One of the essentials you need to know is that in Kenya there are various local cultivars. But all produce great flavors whether eaten raw or with food.
Passion fruit is one of Kenya’s ready produce with real demand abroad. With twirling manner of the fruit’s growth cycle, all family growers in Kenya need is plenty of climbing space, and little else beside the tree. The most popular varieties in the country with a ready market abroad include yellow passion and purple passion.
In case you are wondering about the availability of such produce as fish, mushroom, passion fruit and garlic, look no further than the best SME exporters from Kenya. Selina Wamucii has a large family grower base who participate in our interactive program, Grow For You. Talk to us on how to get a shipment of the latest fresh produce off quarter-acre farms.