A fresh produce exporter is seeking to contract French beans, mangoes, passion fruit and avocadoes farmers from Kajiado, Makueni, Machakos and Kitui counties to grow and supply them with the crop in order to meet their growing demand from European Union market.
FarmGrown Kenya Limited, a Nairobi based exporter which begun its operations last year exporting fruits such as mangoes, passion and avocadoes to Middle East countries has increasingly earned supply demand for the fruits and French beans in the EU countries.
“We have been exporting about eight tonnes of mangoes and avocadoes each to Arab countries but demands have been increasing from season to season from EU forcing us to look for more farmers to grow the crops,” said Frank Gathogo, FarmGrown Kenya Limited managing director.
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The firm is currently working with seven farmers who have a total of between 13 and 15 acres of land spreading across the counties.
According to 2018 Economic Survey report, the volume of fresh horticultural exports increased from 261.2 thousand tonnes in 2016 to 304.1 thousand tonnes in 2017.
The report further denotes that exports values of fruits and vegetables increased by 23.3 per cent and 3.0 per cent, respectively in 2017.
According to the company, farmers from the dry region counties will be given first priority because most of the seasons they depend on irrigation to produce their crops hence the produce are healthy and available all year round.
“As an expert in fresh produce production, farmers who depend on irrigation stand a high chance of steady farming and income throughout the year and to them, rain sometimes comes as a disruption as cases of pests and diseases breakout are rampant at the time,” said Gathogo.
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He says that farmers who are willing to work with them should have a regular source of water for irrigation, show documents of land ownership or leasing, a starting capital, and ability to sign a contract and follow agronomical instruction given by the company’s technical team.
“To keep our farmers up to the international standards, we have a team of five agronomists who engage the farmers in their production process to ensure the Global GAP is met.”
“This is the best way we ensure we satisfy our customers leaving them to demand for more each time.”
Gathogo is now encouraging all farmers including youth to take farming seriously and not as a gamble as it is a proven well-paying venture.
He can be reached on +254 725320345.