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Ultimate guide for beans farming in Kenya

Beans farming in Kenya is not as common as maize. However, it is one of the common grown crops in Kenya. In fact, it is often inter-cropped with the main crop for maximum absorption of nutrients by both plants. Our guide will help interested parties, both farmers and traders to have a clear mind on beans farming and how they can get money as far as beans are concerned.

Varieties of beans grown in Kenya

Beans popularity in Kenya may be due to the fact that bean recipes are numerous and beans are consumed almost with everything and contain quite a considerable amount of protein. Before venturing into beans farming, it is advisable to look at the different varieties available. If a farmer knows the different types of beans he will be able to choose the best based on its performance. Below are the several varieties;

  • Rosecoco beans Kenya
  • Mwezi moja beans
  • Chelalang beans
  • Mwitemania beans
  • Yellow beans

Do your research well as a farmer and identify which variety does well in your area and guarantees high yields.

Read: Some of the best fruits to grow in Kenya

Yield per Acre of Beans

The hybrid varieties nowadays are very impressive and has a high yield compared to the traditional varieties. Most of the improved varieties produce about 20 pods for each plant, which translate to about 25, 90 kg bags per acre. Notably, this crop is high yielding when all the conditions are optimal.

Dry beans market

Beans are source of proteins which makes Kenya depend highly on them. The market for beans is overwhelming, both locally and international. Depending on quality and type of beans, the prices per 90 kg bag of beans ranges between Ksh 7,000 and Ksh 12,000. Particularly, beans fetch better prices when it is not harvesting period. Some varieties are also more expensive than others. The rose coco and kidney beans, for instance, are a bit pricey compared to the other varieties which are available in large quantities. Beans with a high supply across the country will fetch a lower price compared to those that thrive in specific areas. Irrespective of the type of beans, the market for beans is always there and since it’s a grain, you can store it and sell when the prices are high.

Price of beans in Kenya

Just like any other agricultural product, prices for beans fluctuate depending on a number of factors including demand and supply. The crop will tend to be expensive when they are in high demand, which is often around planting time when farmers need seeds for planting, and also during periods with no new crops. The cost may also depend on the region you are in and when you are buying or selling. So different areas in Kenya register varying prices of beans. Averagely, beans prices in Kenya range from Kshs. 7,000 to Kshs. 12,000 in major towns of

Kenya from low to high seasons. The best thing to do when scouting for better rates is to check the indices often provided by trading companies and the government on the prices of beans in major towns including Eldoret, Nakuru, Kisumu, Nairobi, and Mombasa. It is not surprising that each town could register a different price for the same variety of beans. This is because different factors play out when determining the prices.

Read: Why you should have a working business plan for you to succeed in commercial maize farming

Beans production

It is always good to have a projection before embarking on planting the crop. This is where you consider farming as a business and have a clear business plan. You will need to have a structured plan on what to expect through the farming period and how to counter different eventualities. Your projections against the real data will give a vivid picture of whether or not to proceed with the venture. Apart from this, knowing exactly what to do is necessary. Below are some tips that might help you with your business plan;

  • Know the appropriate beans planting season in Kenya
  • Choose the best beans varieties in your area
  • Consider ideal ecological requirements – This includes temperatures of about 20 to 25 degrees, altitude of between 1,000 m to 2,100 m above sea level, rainfall of between 900 mm to 1,200 mm per year and a soil pH of 6.5 to 7.5

Although the market for beans is always there and appealing, beans farming is not an easy task especially if you are to do it commercially. However, it is always possible to register good yields if you do it right and follow the above steps. You also need to have achievable goals.

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Why you should have a working business plan for you to succeed in commercial maize farming

By now you must have heard about maize scandals in Kenya. The government has in the past years zero-rated maize importation to try and ensure Kenyans have their common and affordable meal of “unga” on their tables. This is so because maize is a staple food in Kenya. Maize is one of the most planted crop, both for cash and subsistence purposes. Maize is known to grow in almost all areas in Kenya, with different varieties customized for different zones depending on climate and weather. The aim however is to ensure there is a variety that is resistant to harsh weather conditions and maximize on the yields. Here is our guide to help you maximize your yields.

Read: Some of the best fruits to grow in Kenya

Maize Farming In Kenya: Business plan

Maize farming in Kenya is done by both large scale and small-scale farmers. While those who do it for subsistence purposes may not require business plans, those who do it for commercial purposes may require business plans to guide them on how to succeed in farming. In recent times, maize production has faced many challenges. Pests and diseases over time now has destroyed the crop completely, leading farmers into making losses. The government has tried to save this situation over time but they have failed terribly as the crop faces one problem after another. However, this only means that the crop is always in demand no matter what and farmers should not give up on it.

For you to be a maize farmer in Kenya you must be smart. You should be a farmer who understands well the need of having a well-structured plan with details of required labor, inputs, disease controls as well as harvesting costs. The only way to tell if maize farming revenues are profitable is by having a record to look back to and compare data. What may appear to be a minimal yield could still be profitable according to the amount of investment made. However, sometimes when you think you have bumper harvest, it might not necessarily be profitable as the input made might exceed it. The only way for this kind of unpredictable business is working with a business plan.

Maize farming in Kenya: Techniques

In many countries, maize farming has evolved making it a golden venture. Maize is the third most grown crop in the world after wheat and rice. The business plan you would come up with should offer an industry overview and point you in the direction that you ought to go considering the fact that maize is grown for different purposes. You will also have an analysis of potential gains and losses to prepare you for expected risks.

If a farmer knows what he/she wants and looking forward to, chances are that he or she will put in the very best. Your business plan will also cover the market analysis which means that you avoid the frustrations of not knowing where to sell your produce when it is ready. When you know your target market before you even begin cultivating, chances are that your focus on excellent production will intensify since your market is guaranteed.

Read: How to achieve success in a given agribusiness venture

Maize farming in Kenya: How to plant maize

Maize farmers are always on the lookout for best ways to improve their production and yields. The following simple guidelines will help you get good results;

  • Proper land preparation. Land must be well tilled. Remove grass and weeds as they hinder production of maize
  • Timely planting at the onset of rains. Yields are negatively affected by late planting
  • Choose appropriate hybrids depending on the altitude of your area
  • Consider appropriate plant population and spacing. Go with 90 by 30 cm, or 90 by 55 cm for low plant population and 75 by 25 cm, or 75 by 50 cm for high plant population.
  • Liaise with extension officers in your area for a guide on appropriate fertilizer application
  • Weed early to enhance flowering
  • Protect against pests like stalk borer
  • Harvest and store appropriately when mature

Read: Get Over Ksh 700,000 from an acre of Hybrid onions in Kenya

Maize is one of the most common crop grown in Kenya that people think it just grow. It is actually possible to get more from maize if proper management is undertaken.