The Secret to Kenya Sugar Snap Peas’ Popularity in Europe

Since the mid-1990s, Kenya sugar snap peas have been making a burgeoning climb into popularity and now posterity. This owes to the crowding of the market in the past with other varieties that were only doing well locally but not internationally. A few farmers from that period widened up and began, little by little, to reduce their uptake of fresh peas of the bean variety and growing more of the edible pod variety popular as michiri in local agricultural lingo.

The story now seems like yore when you contrast it to the current market. A single kilo of Kenya sugar snaps at adjusted prices for 2017 goes for as high as KSH200 in family grower prices at the height of winter when supplies in Europe are at a low. In the warm season in the Northern hemisphere, unlike other crops, sugar snaps still make it with about KSH100 each kilo despite the availability of the same locally in Europe.

Be it as it may, here are a couple of secrets that growers of Kenya sugar snap peas use to ensure they remain competitive at the international market:

Low use of fertilizers and other synthetic enrichments. Instead of using stuff such as phosphate, farmers go for decomposed manure.

The necessary growing conditions for sugar snaps of cool climate are possible even in dry areas of the country owing to irrigation schemes, meaning the crop is still available off-season.

Kenyan farmers often rotate their sugar snap peas with other legumes including fresh beans, fresh green peas and snow peas to keep up with pest control.

Another major secret is the fact that they require a few hardy farmers who can manage their fast growth period of just two months. This is where many farmers are ousted by the wise ones. For one, instead of taking this first 60-day period as an advantage to sell, many family growers view it as a challenge to cultivate them by ruler and geometry, so to say.

Firstly, most farmers use poles to tilt the plants which grow up to 130 centimeters in height. They separate them by ample spacing, for so vine-like crops, of a meter or so part to improve aeration. This is vital because the vines of sugar snaps, especially the cascadia variety can spread 200 cm on either direction.

Secondly, farmers know their art in seed and plant propagation. For seeds, they inject them shallow into the soil just an inch and a half below the ground to ensure they still retain their necessary coolness for germination without sacrificing on a little warmth.

Thus, if half an acre of land is all you have to make your sugar snaps a success story, then there you have a magic number.

Thus, are you for the export market of Kenya pods? If so, then start right away and you will perpetuate the success story of those handy farmers who initiated the chain in the mid-nineties that has inspired Kenya’s growth to a powerful exporter of sugar snaps.