Kenya is the rising star. It has taken 65 years to prove that a man can run a marathon in less than 2 hours. What Eliud kipchoge’s success has proved is that the perpetual and best things in life take time. Farmers should all be willing and patient to go through the process because God makes everything beautiful in the fullness of time.
The biggest advantage with Kenya is that its rich soils combined with climate is suitable for hass avocado growing as the crop requires areas with at least 1,000mm of rainfall.
Currently, Kenyan hass avocados are mainly intended for Europe and have recently gained access to the Asian market, where the sector is growing. The acreage and production are growing and new export markets, especially in Asia, are being opened.
The most important development on the export market of Kenyan hass avocados is the future trade agreement with China. As soon as this agreement is fully active, 40% of the avocados are expected to go to the Chinese market.
In 2017, Kenya accounted for 38.9% of Africa’s total avocado exports and for 1.3% of the fruit’s global trade. Kenya is the 7th biggest producer of hass avocados in the world with an average annual production of 191,000 tonnes per year as of 2017, compared to Mexico, the first in the world with, 1.5 million tonnes per year, according to Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).
Kenya can be the leading producer and export if it can address the challenge of increasing irrigation to ensure better yield and uniformity of avocado fruits, increase avocado acreage under production, and improve the quality of avocado fruits by planting the right variety.
Finally, farmers lets embrace hass avocados planting and with all the records set lets know that we are not limited to attaining the number one slot in the world as our great warrior Eliud Kipchoge did.
Hass Avocado Is The Canopy Of Life: A Testimony Of TEHU Self Help Group
They say when people come together they can conquer the world and there is power in numbers. Mr. Paul Muthami Tumuti a writer and a farmer who is the chairman of TEHU self-help group had a vision for the group and the entire Kenya. According to Mr. Muthami “Avocado is the canopy of life”, this is what we are going to show you in this article.
Mr. Muthami who is an alumni of Kimathi Institute which has now changed to Dedan Kimathi University of Technology studied building but decided to do farming as a part timer.
Every day is a learning day and life is an experience. Few farmers had Hass avocado trees in TETU and market was a challenge. Brokers and Cartels always come in sheep skin but inside they are leopards. They will tell farmers how the market has shifted and they should sell their produce to them since they are connected and have ready market.
In 2016, with just 22 members, TEHU (Tetu and Huhoini) Fruits and Vegetables self-help group was formed and registered with assistance of agricultural department. The main purpose of forming the group was most farmers had few mature trees and the only way of having a bargaining power was to be in a group. TEHU was registered from members of several sub-locations that are karaihu, Kigogoini, Gatumbiro, Kiriti, e.t.c.
In 2016, the group sold 52,000 pieces of hass avocado from various farmers to one of the biggest exporters in Kenya. Their anticipation was 10 Ksh per fruit but they only managed to sell at 5.19 Ksh per fruit. They were very demoralized and almost gave up. However, they knew there was hope because previously their fruits were being bought for less than Ksh 2-4.
In 2017 more members joined and they had 17 new members making a total of 35 members. According to the chairman, they were frustrated by the strict conditions given by the exporter and they decided to sell at the farm gate. This time they managed to get a supplier. They sold a total of 78,000 hass avocados fruits at 8.50 Ksh. This was more of a break through. The farmers were excited since they were paid promptly and at the farm gate.
In 2018, the group was becoming bigger, from 35 members to 110. This time the group expanded from Tetu and Huhoini to other areas such as Thegenge, Nyeri Municipality, Mweiga, and Giakanja.e.t.c. The dream was coming to a reality and now the target was an exporter. So the group management together with members called a meeting to deliberate on the terms to be given to the buyers of the fruits.
Avocado Training in Meru, OxfarmAg educating farmers group
Terms to the buyer
They should verify the quality and quantity of the fruits
They should negotiate and agree on the best price.
Exporter/interested party have to deposit a good sum of money in TEHU’s bank account as a down payment.
Supervision both from the exporter and TEHU has to be present during harvesting.
In 2018 the group received more than 10 interested parties who wanted to buy the fruits from members. Each buyer was to come up with best price they can buy the fruits and also best terms. The management tasked by the group was meant to select the best of the parties,
The group members sold the fruits to one of the exporting companies at Ksh 12 per fruits gate price.
In 2019, Things were bigger and better, the members rose from 110 to 300 of which 150 members had mature fruits for sale. This time members came all the way from marwa, and Othaya. After doing the vetting of various interested parties, one exporter who won to buy the fruits bought 450,000 pieces of hass avocado at Ksh 16 and 200,000 Fuertes avocados at Ksh 6- Ksh 8. While the members were selling at Ksh 16, the non-members were selling theirs at Ksh 8. That is 100% difference; do you now believe there is power in numbers?
TEHU has created for the local young people who during harvesting are highly engaged. Its only in 2016 they had professional pickers but there after the group decided to engage the local young people.
Some conditions for Becoming a Member of the group.
TEHU doesn’t discriminate any farmer, whether you are a farmer with a single tree or a farmer like Mr. Kabue from Githakwa with 300 trees. So what do you need to become a member?
Registration and membership fee of Ksh 1000
Fruit should be grown organically, (no synthetic fertilizers). Most exporters want organic products. ( Use traps instead of chemicals to control pests)
Members should undergo trainings
Members should wait for the fruits to mature fully and wait for TEHU management to give out directives
The group management meets at least once in a month to deliberate on issues affecting the group or emerging news. On the other hand, members meet at least twice a year.
Benefits of being in the group to the farmer
After having an interview with TEHU self help group chairman Mr. Muthami, we visited a member of Tehu, Mr Kabui, a farmer of Hass avocado who hass 300 trees and here is a summary of the advantages associated with joining TEHU.
Group creates social relations that enable individuals to achieve goals that they may not otherwise be able to achieve by themselves.
Enable farmers to improve on fruits quality due to trainings.
Help farmers benefit from economies of scale by lowering their costs of acquiring inputs or hiring services such as pickers and transport.
It also empowers their members economically and socially by involving them in decision-making processes that create additional rural employment opportunities, or enable them to become more resilient to economic and environmental shocks.
They have an easy reach to resources as group members can apply for loans on bank they operate on due to the security they have on the fruits.
They have an easy reach to donors such as DANIDA as it has offered to construct a cold room for the group.
They attract good hass Avocado prices as they have quantities that can interest exporters thus eliminating the broker and having a direct exporter of their produce.
How Is the Avocado Market?
According to Mr. Muthami, even if we uprooted all the other trees in Kenya and plant avocados, we wouldn’t meet the global demand of avocado. Currently avocado fruit is the most sort after because of its healthy benefits. Mexico produces more than 40% of the total global production of hass avocado. Combined with other Latin American nations they produce more than 80%.
Their avocado fruits hit the market between March and June. This is a great advantage to Kenya and other tropical countries in Africa since our avocados and especially the highlands mature at around June-September. ” If only we farmers can be patient enough and sell in August…” poses Mr. Muthami. By around that time, there are few fruits in Europe and Middle East which means, by the law of demand and supply, assuming the demand is constant, the price will definitely go higher.
“The consumer wants the product but most don’t have the conditions to grow them. Avocado oil is very expensive and it’s very hard to find it in local market. For economic returns and food security the farmers have to be into groups. Most farmers are frustrated by market when they do it individually. The more you narrow the chain of brokers the more you earn. Use good agricultural practices and channel your energy in good use” Added Mr. Muthami.
What Ministry Of Trade Should Know
County governments and national government can play a vital role in ensuring youths and farmers form groups that can help them market their produce be it fruits or veggies. Nyeri alone produces more than 10 million hass avocado but are disorganized and sell to brokers at less than Ksh 8.
Imagine, TEHU due to their bargaining power sold their fruits at Ksh 16, while most individual farmers at Ksh 8. This means more revenue is lost in Nyeri county alone. Agriculture is the backbone of Kenya in terms of GDP. It then means that if the relevant parties can come together and ensure farmers are organized, they can offer employment.
There are many beneficiaries;
County and national governments
Employment to the local young people
TEHU testimony should be used as an inspiration to many young people.
Where is the Future of Young People in farming?
Young people can form groups and grow crops together. Quantity is the biggest challenge, but if young people have good will, have trusts among them they can do wonders.
The world we are living in has many challenges, after completing education, most youths end up in towns, tarmacking looking for white color jobs but the money is with masses and coming together. We keep on complaining how there no jobs in Kenya, the time is now, and we must come together and fight together.
Writers’ Point of view
TEHU coming together is a success story that ought to reach the entire world. Its part of a comprehensive and sustainable plan advocating the long term vision of the hass avocado farmers. It will benefit farmers and the entire village’s community since it advocates better farming practices at a minimized cost and will thus increase the avocado production leading to more profits for farmers.
I trust that this article would inspire many more hass avocado farmers and help them in creating both employment revenue for themselves. I also take this opportunity to congratulate all the TEHU members who have been working tirelessly for achieving their objective. You are True Heroes!
As OxfarmAg Ltd company we are involved in training and organization of farmers groups interested on avocado farming.
If you would like to book us email us email@example.com
Tea was first introduced in Kenya from India by a colonial settler G.W Caine in 1903. Tea is mainly grown in several districts which include Kericho, Bomet, Nandi, Kiambu, Thika, Maragua, Muranga, Sotik, Kisii, Nyamira, Nyambene, Meru, Nyeri, Kerinyaga, Embu, Kakamega, Nakuru and Trans-nzoia.
The decrease in the annual bonus is being attributed to overproduction, socio-economic and political factors in international markets.
Other contributing factors to the decline in tea prices and returns include the levying of VAT on direct sales by local exporters, levying of VAT on buyer inter-trading, lack of adequate consumer-driven research, development and promotional activities.
Turbulence in the international markets such as economic sanctions imposed on Iran by the US and high inflation rates in Egypt also negatively impact tea market.
Last year, the exchange rate dropped 1.6 per cent as the shilling strengthened against the dollar. Tea is traded in the US dollar, which is then converted to Kenyan shilling.
The growers express their displeasure each and every year but no change is effected on the tea bonus but instead it gets lower and lower thus making tea farmers poorer and poorer.
An acre tea farm on average produces 2500kg an year. This translates to a farmer getting 75,000ksh as bonus if the rate is given at 30ksh. Given the workload done to achieve the target of 2500kg is enormous as almost each and every week the farmer needs to pluck the tea leaves. On average a farmer gets 6,250ksh per month if the bonus is to be divided by 12 months. The other monthly payment per kg which the farmer gets paid covers for labour costs plus the inputs costs of fertilizer. Isn’t this slavery really tea farmers and should this be enough reason to embrace change?
Hass avocado is ideally suited for tea growing zones. An acre of Hass can fetch more than a 1,000,000 ksh under good management skills. Hass avocado variety is the most common for exporters as it has a massive market in Europe as compared to other varieties. The best way to eliminate this suffering from our dear farmers is to intercrop the already established tea with Hass avocado and eventually after three years the trees will have taken over the tea plantation.
HERE IS THE ESTIMATE RETURN FROM AN ACRE UNDER HASS AVOCADO
The first two years –growth stage
• 2nd year (harvest of 50 fruits per tree) – 60k
• 3rd year (harvest 200-250 fruits) – 240k
• 4th year – (400 fruits) – 480k
• 5th year – (800 fruits)- 900k
• 6th year – (1000 fruits) – 1.08m
• 7th year –(1100 fruits) – 1.3m
• 8th year –(more than 1300 fruits) – 1.5m
• 9th year – (more than 1500 fruits) – 1.8m
• 10th year – (more than 1750 fruits) – 2m
A mature avocado tree may produce in excess of a million flowers during the flowering period, most of which fall without producing fruit. One of the factors leading to flower fall is proper pollination not taking place.
Bees are the world’s dominant pollinators. Within orchards they play a vital role in the pollination of the fruit trees. Without them yields might not be economically viable. Therefore, there is a need to protect and ensure the preservation of these important environmental components.
Without honeybees and cross-pollination, a mass majority of fruits would not be available.
Well, the overall goal of cross-pollination is to ensure that the pollen from the stamen in one flower has been transferred to the pistil of another flower. Once the pollen grain has transferred from the stamen to the pistil, the grain germinates and fertilizes the ovule developing a seed. Bees play an imperative role in this process as they are carriers of the pollen.
Lemons can be grown over a wide range of soils. Lemon fruit plant can flourish well on light soils having a good drainage capacity and, deep soils having pH range from 5.5 to 7.5 are considered as the best suitable for lemon tree farming. But, do note that they can be grown up to a pH ranges from 4 to 9. Heavier soils and light loam soils with well drainage facility sub soils are supposed to be the ideal for growing lemon trees.
Lemon is mostly asked because of its extensive bitterness. It is also known for its juice and pulp throughout the different portion of the world. It is mostly asked for its extensive bitterness. Its extensive bitterness is beneficiary in curing numbers of disease and disorders. It is full of amazing medicinal value, and it is especially recommended to the pregnant women.
Most lemon trees can take about three years after planting to yield some lemons suitable for picking, which is long as they are cared for correctly.
Health Benefits of Lemons
Lemons are a good source of vitamin C.
Improves the digestive system.
Protects against anemia as it contains iron.
Protects against kidney stones.
Helps in preventing some cancers.
An acre of lemons can accommodate 200 plants. Lemon plant bears over 1000 fruits annually. The minimum selling price for a lemon fruit is 5ksh. This means a farmer would get 1millonKsh as he would be selling 200,000 fruits.
As the country gears for referendum of Punguza Mzigo or either the BBI to ease the financial burden and corruption the country is facing so do our beloved farmers need to plant Hass avocado this coming rainy season to ease their financial strains in three years to come.
The gains of the proposed amendments to the constitution may be gained in three years to come and so do the gains by planting Hass avocado will be realized. As the politicians are yelling for the amendments of the constitution so do farmers need to embrace change in the various traditional methods of farming to realize profits and profits for their hard work. With many of the resources needed for sustainable food security already stretched, the challenges are huge. At the same time, climate change is already negatively impacting agricultural production globally and locally. Farms must increase production of food while preserving the environment, but they can’t do it alone and they can’t do it using today’s traditional farming practices.
Each and every second the world population increases by three people or more which translates to an average of 240,000 people per day. This should serve as an opportunity to our farmers as more food is needed to feed this ever increasing population.
An acre of Hass avocado with good and proper management can earn a farmer over 1million ksh. This is the change farmers should clamor for. Here at OXFARM we do offer various farming packages which are detailed in our blogs.
For Hass avocado establishment contact 0706, 222,888.
These early mid-season June-bearing strawberries are a good choice for fresh pickings of homegrown, bright red, flavorful fruit. Firm, large and beautifully shaped, these berries are especially appealing in fresh fruit trays.
The vigorous, high-yielding, June-bearing Chandler strawberry plants produce very desirable strawberries. Chandler strawberries are very large, firm, and produce early-season to mid-season. The strawberries vary from being long and wedge-shaped to large and conical. They are a brilliant red color, glossy, and have an exceptional flavor profile.
The Chandler variety has gained prominence among many farmers in Kenya due to its fast maturing rate, superior pest and disease resistance traits and low cost production process. On average strawberry takes three months to mature.
Chandler strawberries, however, are susceptible to root rot and absolutely must have well-drained soil and be planted properly. The preferred soil pH is about 6, and additional watering is needed when rainfall is not sufficient. The mulching helps to suppress weeds and retains moisture around the berries.
The collapse of the coffee crop has led to farmers exploiting other farming ventures to fill the financial gap. One of the best ways of fixing this mess is macadamia farming which has proved to be a lucrative business.
The observed decline in coffee production among smallholder farmers is due to a number of factors, including the collapse of the International Coffee Agreement (ICA) in the 1980s, lack of access to credit, inadequate transportation and communication, poor banking infrastructure and poorly managed cooperatives.
Many coffee farmers operate at a loss, with their beans earning about $0.55 per kilogram, according to a report last year by London-based advocacy group Fair Trade.
Liberalization of the coffee sector resulted in decreased production of coffee. The reasons cited for the decline in coffee production included:- the mismanagement of co-operative societies; declining farmers’ earnings; decline in application of inputs; poor farming practices; and farmers’ loss of confidence in management of coffee affairs.
Farmers are being swayed by the prompt and better pay from macadamia nuts compared to coffee, which, apart from low returns, is labour-intensive and requires a lot of care.
“I have had people come here and openly bid for my macadamia harvest. I pick the highest bidder, and get my pay instantly. This is not the case with coffee; I have to wait for months to receive pay and I have no say in what I get paid as the deductions are done at the factory,” these are words from Gikondi , Mukurweini farmer called Ngigi when he was being interviewed by a standard newspaper reporter.
According to Oxfarm Ltd, an acre of land will hold to 70 Macadamia trees. This could earn a farmer, going by the minimal returns of Ksh150 per kilogram of nuts Ksh1, 050,000 per acre if a farmer harvests 100Kg per tree, depending on farming practices and favorable climate. At the primary harvest, that comes 3 years after transplantation of seedlings, a farmer will get between 30kg and 50kg, reckoning on the range and the attention given to the trees. Production will increase with each harvest.
In coffee farming the returns in an acre are very low and incomparable to macadamia earnings. Coffee farmers are earning peanuts and have been plunged in cooperative debts for years. Here at Oxfarm we do advise farmers on how to establish a macadamia plantation by intercropping with coffee and get relieved off the colonial crop which has made our hardworking farmers poor and poorer.
To order certified grafted macadamia variety seedling contact 0706 222 888.
Muranga 20 variety is hardy and adapts well in different climatic conditions and is becoming more popular due to its fast growth rate and increased production.
Muranga 20 variety has a lifespan of over 100 years.
A macadamia tree is an investment, as are many fruit and nut trees, taking 3 years after planting a grafted specimen before the tree produces a significant crop.
Macadamia nuts are a growing market and as such provide an attractive investment opportunity because it’s an easy crop to deal with. It’s not alternate bearing, has a low labour requirement and farmers get a return on their investment in about three to five years.
You will need rich well drained soil for best results. A good supply of nitrogen and potassium are needed to produce quality fruit. Addition of animal manure and compost as a regular side dressing throughout the growing season is recommended.
Keep the weeds away from competing for water and nutrients as this will increase the vitality of the tree and maximize production of the nuts.
Kenya’s climatic condition is ideal for optimum macadamia production and the timing of this project to coincide with the rising global demand is not a coincidence- rather a calculated move to help local farmers prosper.
Demand in the global market is rising and outstrips supply. There lies an opportunity for Kenyan farmers to take advantage and be part of this global boom.
According to Oxfarm Ltd, an acre of land will hold to 70 Macadamia trees. This could earn a farmer, going by the minimal returns of Ksh150 per kilogram of nuts Ksh1,050,000 per acre if a farmer harvests 100Kg per tree, depending on farming practices and favorable climate. At the primary harvest, that comes 3 years after transplantation of seedlings, a farmer will get between 30kg and 50kg, reckoning on the range and the attention given to the trees. Production will increase with each harvest.
To order Muranga 20 variety seedling contact 0706 222 888.
There is a huge demand of fruits as more people are becoming healthy conscious, There is increased population driving the demand of food higher, Due to numerous challenges while farming traditional crops like Maize and other cash crops like coffee and tea, the trend favors fruit tree farming.
There is also a decline in major fruit producing countries in southern hemisphere like Mexico and South Africa due to climate change which is favoring countries in tropics like Kenya.
Due to enhanced bilateral trade between Kenya and other countries like China and US the demand will continue to rise due to enhanced ease of doing business and exports.
We as OxfarmAg ltd we assist in farm orchard establishment for various types of fruit trees.
Through our research, we have realized that most farmers do not have required expertise to go about fruit tree farming and they make they make costly mistakes while establishing their orchards.
This has caused many customers huge losses, of trial and error.
As OxfarmAg ltd we assist in giving valuable information, establishment of the orchards and marketing of the produce on the behalf of the farmer.
Here are some of discounted prices of various fruit tree farming.