In Summary
  • The cost of inputs and equipment has been escalating amid intensifying competition in local and global markets.
  • To ensure robust and sustainable agricultural production, a lot depends on the resilience, creativity and innovation of the key actors in Kenya’s agriculture value chains.

Being along the equator, Kenya is strategically located to support agricultural production all year round. The country is endowed with a range of ecosystems that enable the growth of diverse farm produce.

For years, the country’s coffee, tea and horticultural produce has dominated global markets. Locally, agriculture is the spine that holds the economy together, supporting manufacturing, financial, retail, transport and other sectors, and contributing nearly a third of Kenya’s economic output.

CHALLEGES

Despite this, the sector is grappling with numerous challenges. High-potential land is scarce at less than 85 per cent of total area, and it has been decreasing due to expansion of urban settlements and infrastructure projects, loss of forest cover, and population growth.

Water for irrigation is scarce and costly, and climate change remains a critical threat.

The cost of inputs and equipment has been escalating amid intensifying competition in local and global markets.

These challenges have led to increased food insecurity: GoK reports, corroborated by USAid, estimated two million people needed food aid in July this year, especially in arid and semi-arid counties. However, it’s not all gloom.

There have been significant gains in some sectors, with new markets and opportunities opening up for Kenya.

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