On a small plot, approximately 25 by 60 feet, in the sprawling Kayole estate is the story of one pig farmer who has perfected the art of urban farming after ditching investment in real estate for farming.
Muhoro Mwai, like majority of the young entrepreneurs in Kayole toyed with the idea of building rental housing units in his small land. With the rental units he would be earning Sh1,000 for each one roomed house he wanted to build. This is a far cry from what he currently earns.
He has never regrets changing his mind and delving into pig farming. In his small land, he rears 140 pigs which he sells to butchers and other buyers. Among the pigs that he keeps include sows, piglets and boars. “What makes this venture more appealing is the fact that I have managed to keep my expenses very low. Pig farmers complain about the exorbitant price of conventional feeds, but I have perfected the art of getting feeds from where it is produced, bringing down the expenses considerably,” Muhoro said. For example he buys feeds like rice bran from Mwea Irrigation Scheme where it is in plenty, at Sh450 a 70kg bag, which costs Sh1600 in Nairobi.
The bran is mixed with other supplements and minerals. He also works with traders from Wakulima Market who sells him cabbage waste at Sh150 per bag. “I feed them once per day and ensure they are well fed and there is constant check from the veterinary officer. With that I have managed to keep them healthy and attractive to buyers,” he added. At seven months he sells them at between Sh15,000 and Sh25,000. He has maintained a healthy brood from having invested Sh100,000 to buy the first three sows. From that initial investment, the sows gave birth to 11 piglets each which is how the brood has grown. To utilize on the small sapce, he has built storey pens for the pigs.
He has also invested in four daily cows and 30 indigenous chickens. Alhough he says the cows and the chicken are not for commercial purposes, he is looking to expand the venture one day to reap big from his entreprise.
“At 35, I wouldnt wish for anything else. I have totally enjoyed this kind of farming especially doing it in the urban areas where most of the people believe it is impossible. I have employed two people who have been of great help to me, and most importantly, I have built a business I never thought would give me such huge returns within such a short time. There is money in farming,” he said.
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