Capsicum is one of the most favourite ingredients in urban cooking, but many farmers prefer green and red types to yellow variety because of the ready market in the most middle class households.
This has gradually created short supply in demand of the yellow variety, more-so, in the up market consumers, who are parting with more cash in the supply depressed situation.
Wycliffe Obwoge, an agronomist with a Nairobi-based international agribusiness company, says the few growers of the yellow variety are making more than four times what the rest common variety farmers.
With one green or red capsicum fetching between Sh5 and Sh10, yellow type sells at between Sh20 and Sh50 per peace, depending on the supply.
“More big hotels and supermarkets are looking for yellow capsicum for their specialized clientele. The farmers I visit tell me they are unable to meet orders. As more farmers grow the red and green varieties, which are common, a gap is created allowing for increased price for the few growers,” Mr Obwoge says.
With most of the greenhouse farmers he visits being within or bordering Nairobi County, the agronomist says, access to good markets is not much of a challenge.
Harvesting starts from 60 days to 90 days. One plant can yield up to 35 standard fruits when the farm is under good management.
From one harvest, a farmer can realise up to 200 kilos once from a 15m by 8m greenhouse. When the price is at its lowest, one can earn Sh24,000 with one kilo selling at Sh120.
Yellow capsicum is rich in vitamin A, C and E.
The Amiran Kenya agronomist says the company is gradually witnessing increased demand for yellow capsicum seeds as more farmers eye this vegetable ingredient.