The Kenyan horticulture includes a broad range of fruits, vegetables and an export-oriented flower sector. In this report, however, the depiction (and further analysis) of the horticulture supply chain focuses on fresh fruits, (leafy) vegetables and potatoes. The scope proposed brings the focus necessary to the subsequent analysis.
Kenya’s tropical and temperate climate zones allow all year-round cultivation of a wide range of crops. High soil fertility and competitive labour force also help horticultural systems to proliferate. Crops grown in the coastal lowlands include mangos, citrus fruits, cashews, bananas, hot peppers, brinjals and melons. At higher altitudes, farmers grow bananas, mangos, avocado, pineapple, grapes, passion fruit, pawpaw,…show more content… Trading relationships between traders and wholesalers remain largely informal and characterized by low levels of investments. Wholesalers and intermediaries traders tend to assemble the produce in rural areas and then transport it to the city.
Around 20 percent of the produce is collected off the farm. Wholesalers work with smaller assemblers and also visit farms directly, assembling product by the truckload for forward shipment. Supermarket chains, with a 4-5% retail market share in Nairobi and at most one-half of their volume flowing through preferred supplier channels, also play a minor role in rural assembly(Tschirley et al, 2008).
Middlemen or traders often arrange the transportation from the farm to the city. Transport of commodities to the main cities/towns take place in lorries with a minimum of seven tons of capacity. Often, produced is carried in precarious and no refrigerated trucks. When targeting international markets, exporters hire cooled vehicles that cool the product from the moment of harvest until shipment. The statistics show that the cost of transportation takes the greatest proportion of the costs of fresh produce in the…show more content… Processed fruit and vegetables are usually treated as manufactured products, but their complexity and value-added can be lower than for some flowers and pre-packaged fresh produce. Canned pineapples and pineapple juice for exports take up to 85% of all fruit exports. The primary processed products in the domestic market for processed fruits and vegetables include canned tomatoes and tomato products, canned French beans, fruit juices and juice concentrates, sauces and chutneys, and jams. Also, pre-washed salads and vegetables that are ready for cooking have become increasingly popular. Total processed fruits and vegetables amounted to about 400,000 MT in 2003 of which about 260,000 MT was consumed domestically (Wiersinga and de Jager, 2007). A wide range of fruit and vegetable processing facilities exists in Kenya. These range from modern, fully integrated plantation processors like Del Monte to micro-enterprises (very small home/street operations) (van der Lands et al,