Articles

Stakeholders at the Kick-off Workshop of the German Food Partnership-Potato Initiative Africa

Prof Nderitu the DVC, Research and Development (Standing 2nd row left) joins other stakeholders during the workshop to develop scalable approach to establish competitive potato value chains, especially benefiting smallholder farmers and their families.

Lack of smallholder-tailored postharvest management, including storage, and good agricultural practices the quality and efficiency of the value chains there are major challenges facing potato industry.

The situation is worsened by the following factors:

  1. Inadequate training and technology transfer to smallholder farmers;
  2. Low levels of productivity of smallholders hindering competitiveness with imports and thus limiting benefits from growing demands for value added products in their region;
  3. Weak business relations between local producers and processors;
  4. Limited availability healthy seed and suitable varieties as being the basis for a high quality end product;
  5. Lack of viable financial solutions along the value chain

With better coordination of the value chain, seed producers, farmers, researchers, and certification institutions there will increase information flow and trust leading to increased volumes and quality of potato produced and ultimate incomes by the small holder farmers. Over years GIZ Agriculture programme has been supporting service providers involved in promotion of potato value chain. 30,000 farmers were reached during training programmes.

 

The programme supported formation and registration of National Potato Council of Kenya, an organisation whose objective is to strengthen coordination of stakeholders and lobby for support by government of Kenya to support potato production marketing since it is the second most important crop after maize in terms of food security, income generation and employment creation.