Farmers from Nyeri and Nakuru counties are urgently looking for market for their more than 1.35 tonnes of garlic upon harvesting after the long rain season which ended two months ago resulting into good yields.
The farmers who harvested the onions last week are now curing them setting them ready for market. However, they are decrying of the infiltration of foreign garlic in the Kenyan markets making it difficult for local farmers to sell.
“I harvested a tone of garlic two weeks ago and I have been curing them while in search of market which has become challenging due to imported garlic from Ethiopia and China,” said Samuel Njuguna, a farmer from Endarashsa, Nyeri County.
The farmer says that before the infiltration, the market price of the onions used to trail at Sh360 per kilo but with the cheap imported garlic, the price has drastically dropped.
“I was lured into garlic production due to its high value in market as compared to other onions which goes at Sh60 per kilo but now the price of the onions has dropped to Sh260 or even Sh150 for local farmers,” said Njuguna.
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He has been growing red bulb onions within his two acres piece of land but decided to try out garlic during the past long rain period as the crop needs much water to thrive.
With the challenging market, Njuguna is thinking of embarking on red bulb onions for the short rain season expected towards the end of the year.
For Minnie Kang’ethe who grows garlic in her quarter acre farm in Lanet, Nakuru County, she harvested the crop last week and she has been looking for where to sell with an expectation of a good price given it is her first time to venture into the onion production.
“Hustling for market has not been easy. Every market i have visited including Marikiti Market in Nakuru and Nairobi, I find the Chinese garlic everywhere and consumers say they are cheap and long lasting giving a challenge to our local produce,” said Kang’ethe.
She is now willing to sell the produce between Sh300 and Sh260 for all first-comers. She has about five bags of 90kgs which she is currently curing.
Any interested buyer can contact Njuguna on +254 711079322 and Kang’ethe on +254 708013898.