Following the realisation early this year that Kenya cannot supply the Chinese market with the quantity and quality of avocados that the Asian country needs, some 15 organisations have formed an avocado consortium to make this became possible.

The objective is to recruit, contract, train and certify farmers.

 They would then be trained on harvesting, postharvest handling, bookkeeping, finance, and agronomy, among other things.

Besides training and capacity building, they would also be able to access direct markets through the uptake by some of the members. Members of the group, which was launched early this year, include Equity Holdings, Jkuat University, Zetech University, Kephis, HCD, Mo-farm, Kakuzi, Delphy Kenya, Farm Africa, Elite Youth Group, Crop Nuts, Elgon Kenya, Export Promotion Council, Elite Professional Group and County Government.

Each member is tasked with a particular role and Zetech University’s is to impart entrepreneurial and agribusiness skills to the farmers. Prof Peter Kibas, of Zetech University, says farmers working with the consortium will be properly trained.

“We want to equip our farmers with managerial, entrepreneurial and IT skills to enable them to think differently,” he adds.

He was speaking during an interview with the Smart Farmer magazine at his office.

“They will be able to determine their own prices, find out where the opportunities are and the markets and be also able to take risks and network with others,” he explains.

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