Main Crops Produced

The main crops under cultivation in the county include cassava, cucurbits family, maize, vegetables, millet and sorghum. These are most preferred due to their resistance to diseases and pests. The climatic conditions of the county make plants prone to diseases and pests and therefore, highly resistant varieties are encouraged.

Acreage under Food Crops and Cash Crops

The total acreage under food crops stands at 400 ha while the total acreage under cash crops is 500 ha. Additionally, 340 ha of land are utilized for forestry farming. The County is generally a net importer of food and other agricultural products and this makes the cost of food high and inaccessible to most of the low income earners.

Average Farm Sizes

The average farm sizes for small scale farming is 2.5ha. This is small compared to the high population of the county hence leading to a majority of the food being imported from other counties and countries in order to satisfy the food needs of the county residents.

Main Storage Facilities

The National Cereals and Produce Board storage silo in Changamwe Sub-county serves the entire county. However, it is supplemented by private storage facilities such as the grain bulk handling facilities, and private stores owned by individual businessmen and farmers who use traditional storage methods.


Main Livestock Bred

The main livestock bred in the county include goats, sheep, cattle, chicken and other poultry. The Kenya Meat Commission’s abattoir, which is located in the county, imports animals for slaughter from other counties due to unavailability of beef cattle in the county.

Number of Ranches

The county is predominantly urban and is almost entirely occupied by human settlements and therefore there are no ranches in the county.

Main Fishing Activities, Types of Fish Produced and Landing Sites

The county has 65km2 of open water and access to 40km2 of the Exclusive Ecological Zone (EEZ) which is a high potential fishing ground. The local communities living adjacent to the ocean are however unable to fully exploit the fish potential due to lack of appropriate fishing gear and vessels and the recent attacks by pirates in the Indian Ocean waters. The main types of fish caught include rabbit fish, scavenger, snappers, parrot fish, surgeon fish as well as sharks, lobsters and prawns. There are 14 fish landing sites in the county some of which face the risk of being encroached as is common along and near the beaches and hence made inaccessible.



Irrigation infrastructure and schemes


Kwale County is predominantly semi-arid, with many of the region’s farmers depending on rain fed agriculture. Reliance on rain fed agriculture makes farmers in the county vulnerable to climate shocks and changes. However, the county has irrigation potential especially in the drier parts of the county such as Kinango Sub County. Moreover, staggered horticultural crops production is significantly viable under irrigation as the county has high potential in water harvesting.

Crop, livestock, fish production and value addition


Agriculture is one of the main economic activities carried out in Kwale County with 85% of farmers practicing subsistence farming. The agricultural sector plays a crucial role in guaranteeing food security, poverty reduction and employment creation in the County. In spite of the importance of agriculture,

food insecurity is still a challenge in the county. Most of the farmers in the county practice mixed farming. The County is divided into various agro-ecological zones (AEZs) in terms of agricultural potential as

shown in the table below:

Zones % of land


Economic Activities
Coastal lowlands CL2 zone (lowland

marginal sugar cane zone)

3 Main production area for rain fed rice. Most of the

food crops grown in the district are found here

Coastal lowlands CL3 zone (coconut and

cassava zone)

13 Tree crops, food crops and livestock. Crops

includes cashew nuts, maize and beans while

livestock includes dairy animals

Coastal lowlands CL4 zone (cashew nut

and cassava zone)

12 Marginal agricultural potential with cashew nuts

dominating the cash crops. Livestock is kept and

crops produced on small scale

Coastal lowlands CL5 zone (livestock and

millet zone)

40 Livestock (cattle, poultry and goats). Subsistence

crops (maize, sorghum, cowpeas, groundnuts,

cassava and green grams)

Coastal lowlands CL6 zone (ranching


32 Very little crop production potential. Majority of

farmers concentrate on keeping of local cattle and

goats as their main source of livelihood

Table : Agro-Ecological Zones and their agricultural potential


Main crop production

The average farm size is 4.8 ha, with little disparity when disaggregated by head of household (men 4.9ha, women 5.2 ha; and youth 4 ha) (GoK, 2014). The total area under food crops is 27,606 ha and consists of maize, cassava, beans, cowpea; green gram spread across the County. Cowpea, cassava and green gram is prominent in the hot and dry coastal hinterland, and in the semi-arid areas of Kinango. Cash crops include cashew nut (all over the County), sugarcane (mostly in Lunga-Lunga sub- County and Ramisi), cotton (held on trial in Msambweni) and Bixa (in Lunga-Lunga, Msambweni, Matuga)) and are spread on 44,868 ha of agricultural land. Semi-commercial crops, such as coconuts and

mangoes are found throughout the entire County, particularly in Msambweni and Matuga sub counties. The County has implemented mechanization services program over the past five years which saw 300 farms cultivated every season using County tractors in each of the 20 wards, provision of certified farm inputs and micro irrigation projects. As a result, farm productivity for maize, cowpeas and green grams increased to 268,965, 23,900 and 30,950 tonnes respectively. The current acreage on maize, cowpeas and green gram production stands at 20868, 3403 and 1595 hectares respectively.

Main storage facilities

The storage facilities in the county are traditional granaries for on-farm produce and NCPB stores at Kwale town for off-farm. Additionally, the county has three cereal banks used for storage of surplus cereals from farmers.

Main livestock breeds


Livestock production is the main economic activity in the drier parts of the county that receives rainfall of below 700mm. This region covers about two thirds of the county. Kwale County has an estimated 190,988 zebu cattle, 5,475 dairy cross, 3,371,126 goats, 54,578 sheep and 725,000 poultry. These are the main livestock species in the county which are distributed across the two livelihood zones (CL 5 and 6). Livestock is kept for both food and income generation and contributes around 25 percent of the county income. Under this sub-sector, the County implemented livestock breed programmes for dairy, beef cattle and goats for distribution to livestock farmers.

Number of ranches

There are 20 ranches in the county. Out of these five are company ranches and eight group ranches most of which are in Kinango Sub-county.

Main Fishing Activities, Types of Fish Produced and Landing Sites

Kwale has abundant fisheries reserves along the coastline. Major fish reserves include: Shimoni, Vanga, Msambweni, Diani, and Tiwi. There are 20 beach management units (BMUs) and 54 landing sites. The main types of fish include Rabbit Fish, scavengers, snappers, parrot fish, octopus, squids and variety of

ornamental fish. In addition, there are 338 fish ponds in the county. To promote the fishing industry, County government procured assorted fishing accessories which included 12 fishing boats and nets, which have been distributed to Beach Management Units (BMUs) in Waa Ng’ombeni, Bongwe-Gombato, Kinondo, Ramisi, Pongwe-Kikoneni and Vanga wards. However, due to group dynamics, the management of these fishing boats by BMUs has not been satisfactory. As a

result, the County Government has emphasized on strengthening the capacity of Beach Management Units (BMUs).

Bee keeping (apiculture)


Bee keeping (apiculture) is a livestock subsector with a huge untapped potential to contribute to improving nutrition and income to rural households. It is a relatively cheap to venture and has a lot of benefits to the environment. Both modern and traditional beekeeping methods are being practiced throughout the county. The county government donated 100 modern beehives and 100 beekeeping kits to farmers with an aim of encouraging modern beekeeping technologies and increase honey production.

Agricultural training and extension services

The County has one Agricultural Training Centre, which is situated in Mkongani ward in Matuga Sub County. The institution is a hub for disseminating modern agricultural technologies. The County Government also has an Agricultural Mechanization Services centre in Msambweni Sub County which offers extension and mechanization services.



Crop, Livestock, Fish Production and Value addition


This section provides information of the main types, illustrating the main foods and horticultural crops which are grown in the county. The average farm size and average acreage under food and cash crops, crop as well as their contribution to the economic development of the county is also shown. The main type of livestock kept, and their economic value to the county’s economic development is illustrated.

Main Crops Produced

More than half of the land in the county is arable. Major crops that are grown for subsistence purposes include maize, cassava, green grams, cow peas, rice and bananas.

Major Food Crops in Kilifi County 

Food Crops Area Ha Annual production (MT) Value (Kshs)
Maize 94,109 37,586 1,315,510,000
Cassava 3,781 35,399 176,995,000
Cow peas 8,880 2,240 156,800,000
Green grams 6,109 1,431 114,480,000
Total 112,879 76,656 1,763,785,000

Horticultural crops play a vital role in terms of improving the socio-economic welfare of the communities in the County.Cashewnut, coconut and mangoes are the major horticultural crops grown in the county. Other horticultural crops grown are the pineapples, lemons, passion fruits, lime, pawpaw, water melons and vegetables. All these play a critical role in increasing income at the household level hence contributing to poverty alleviation.

Horticultural crops

Crop Farm land area in Ha Yields(MT) Income in Kes
Cashewnut 13,775 16,750 362,792,770
Coconut 35,494 40,510 899,093,958
Mangoes 9,699 150,300 1,135,834,320
Total 58,968 207,560 2,397,721,048

Horticultural Crops (Fruits)

Type of crop Botanical name Areas in Ha Quantity(Ton) Income in Kshs
Banana Musa sp 2100 20,200.00 70,808,400
Oranges Citrus sinensis 1062.5 12,304.60 150,704,296
Tangerines Citrus tangerina 367.5 4,569.50 60,935,300
Lemons Citrus limon 231.60 2,889.40 33,488,400
Lime Citrus latifolia 346.50 3,001.00 20,206,032
Passion Fruits Passifloraedulis 286.30 4,332.40 10,602,700
Pineapples Ananascomosus 1,245.00 3,218.00 3,418,500
Pawpaw Carica papaya 1,051.50 10,660.50 73,771,495
Water Melons Citrulluslanatus /cucumismelo 120.70 2,184.00 113,060,900
Guavas Psidiumguajava 13 72.00 720,000
Apples Malusdomestica 17.5 246.00 7,785
Pears Pyruspyreae 4.8 86.40 2,592
Total 6,846.9 63,763.8 537,726,400

Acreage Under Food and Cash Crops

The county has abundant arable land which is estimated at 6,891.2km2 with the non-arable land constituting of 5,407 km2. This implies that over 56% of the land in the county is suitable for agricultural practices while the remaining 44% can be transformed for agricultural purposes by investing in irrigation related technologies. Ironically it’s only a total area of 112,879 Ha of land is under food crops while that under horticultural including fruits and vegetables is 73041.7 Ha in the county. In this regard, it’s important to increase the total land areas under crop production in a bid to secure food security and also support agribusiness development for economic prosperity in the county in tandem with the aspirations of SDGs 1 and 2 seeking to eradicate poverty in all its dimensions and hunger. This calls for deliberate efforts to promote innovation Public Private Partnerships (PPP) in a bid to support heavy investment in poverty reduction and food security through re-engineering agriculture.

Average Farm Sizes

The average Land size per HH for most small holder farmers is 3.6 acres and 8.09 ha for large scale farms in the county. The total number of farm families is 199,674 of which 80,960 are male and the remaining 118,714 are female. The small farm size for the majority of the small holder farmers has been a limiting factor on the amount of farm produce though employment of agricultural inputs such as certified seeds and fertilizer has led to improved productivity.

Main Storage Facilities

There are two main categories of storage facilities in the county. These include the traditional storage facilities commonly referred to as granaries, constructed using either grass or makuti by small holders farmers for the storage of farm produce. The other category is the modern storage facilities such as the go-downs belonging to the National Cereal and Produce Board (NCPB) which are located in Kilifi town. The facility is used for storage of bulk grains.

Extension Services

The county has a total of 129 extension officers distributed across the sub counties. They play a critical role in capacity building and dissemination of information to support crop production and productivity among the farmers. Field days, group visits, individual farm visits, demonstrations, farmer and staff trainings, tours/exchange visits and extension,Farmer Field Schools (FFS) are the main extension approaches used in the county. The county also has institutions and centersinvolved in training, research and dissemination of information vital for supporting agricultural and livestock production and productivity. These include (ATC) Mtwapa, (KALRO) Mtwapa, (KALRO) Msabaha, (KALRO) Mariakani and Pwani University.

Livestock Production

Livestock keeping is an important economic activity that supports the livelihoods of many communities in the county. Cattle, sheep, goats and poultry are the major types of livestock kept by subsistence farmers in the county. Small holder farmers keep at least 10 cattle per household. The Indigenous breed-mainly Zebu and Boran are most common livestock breeds kept by small holder farmers. Exotic breeds are kept by commercial dairy farmers in the county including Kilifi Plantation found within 3 kilometers of the shoreline with cattle populations of more than 600 pure and cross breeds. Some of the breeds kept are Freshian, Ayshire, Brown Swiss, Fleckvier, Sahiwal, Jersey and some crosses of the Boran. Small East African Goat and the Galla comprise the major breeds of goats kept. On the other hand, the most common breeds of sheep in the county are Blackhead Persian and indigenous. Local and exotic poultry is kept mainly for meat and egg production. The Califonia White and Chinchila are the most predominant breeds of rabbits found in the county. Other types of livestock kept are pigs, ostrich, bees and rabbits for their honey and meat, respectively. Table 1.15 shows the estimated population of livestock in the county.

Products Estimated quantities(last 5 yrs) Unit Unit Price (Ksh) Total values (Kshs)
Milk 129,804,910 Ltr 35 4,543,171,850
Beef 16,136,240 Kg 360 5,809,046,400
Chevon 2,845,400 Kg 400 1,138,160,000
Mutton 484,300 Kg 400 193,720,000
Pork 161,800 Kg 600 97,080,000
Rabbit meat 29,400 Kg 600 17,640,000
Chicken 1,792,130 Kg 500 896,065,000
Skins 1,165,615 Pcs 150 174,842,250
Hides 467,615 Pcs 300 140,284,500
Eggs 523,351 Tray 300 157,005,300
Honey 121,360 Kg 700 84,952,000

Livestock production in the county is hampered by the prevalence of diseases. Livestock in the county is prone to diseases such as Foot and Mouth Disease, Lumpy Skin Disease which occur occasionally. Other endemic diseases are Newcastle, gumboro and contagious Caprine Pleura Pneumonia (CCPP). It’sworth noting that incidences of both anthrax and rabies occur occasionally

Tick borne diseases prevalent in the county are Heart water, East coast fever and anaplasmosis.In 2017, several incidences of heart water, East coast fever and anaplasmosis diseases were reported among cattle and goats across the county. Tsetsefly borne disease (Trypanosomiasis), diarrhea, helminthiasis, and pneumonia are also prevalent in the county.

Livestock keeping increases household income significantly and therefore contributing towards poverty reduction in tandem with SDG 1, which seeks to eradicate extreme poverty in all its dimensions for all people everywhere. Cattle and indigenous chicken contributes to 52 and 30 percent of household cash income, respectively. Goats and sheep on the other hand contribute 10 and 3 percent of cash income, respectively. In the ranching zone, goats contribute 65 percent of the household cash income.

Key challenges faced by livestock farmers in the county are frequent drought spells, poor quality of breeds, wildlife invasions, pests and diseases, inadequate infrastructure and poor marketing of ranch products. In this regard, investing in upgrading of local breeds, strengthening marketing strategies, strengthening disease control strategies through creation of a disease free zone is will be prioritized in leveraging the sector’s contribution to poverty reduction.


The county has a total of 11 ranches. Six (6) of these are group owned, two (2) are owned by the Agricultural Development Corporation (ADC), two (2) owned by a private company and one (1) is a private ranch. One group ranch is dormant while the rest are active. Private ranches include Giriama Company and Kilifi Company, while group ranches include; Birya, Ndigiria/Mapotea, Mnangoni, Dola, Chakama, Kiski and Weru,. The ADC ranches include Galana and Kulalu. Livestock are kept primarily for milk and beef production. The carrying capacity of each of the ranch is estimated at 3 livestock per hectare in dairy zones and 0.25 livestock per hectare in the rangelands. Developing a disease control strategy to curb endemic diseases will play a critical role in ensuring high quality livestock products both for the local and export markets.


Apiculture is a significant economic activity among small holder farmers in the County. The county has a total of 14,192 bee hives of which, 3,533 comprise of log hives, 3,789 Kenya Top Bee Hive (KTBH) and 6,870 langstroth bee hives. Honey production amounted to 121,360 kg in the last 5 years translating to Ksh 84,952,000 income at the household level. In the last two years honey production was negatively affected by persistent drough



Main Crops Produced


The main crops produced in the county are mangoes, cowpeas, bananas and green grams. Farmers in the county mainly rely on rain fed and flood recession farming systems with only a few practicing irrigated farming. Maize production also takes place in the irrigation scheme.

Acreage under Food Crops and Cash Crops

The total acreage of farms under food crop production is 7,527 hectares while that under cash crop production is 7,063 hectares.

Average Farm Sizes

The arable area in the county is 2,547 Km2 with the average farm size being 0.71 ha. Farmers normally grow subsistence crops.

Main Storage Facilities

The main storage facilities for farm produce in the county include houses, barns and granaries. The NCPB depot is located in Bura and Garsen with capacities of 10,000 bags each. One storage facility with similar capacity has been constructed at Hola Irrigation scheme by the county government. There is need for more storage facilities to be constructed to accommodate the increase in food production.

Agricultural extension, training, research and information services

The department of agriculture is mandated to provide agricultural extension activities in the county. Currently there are 27 field extension officers to cover 31,055 farmers spread in 15 wards in 3 sub counties. This gives a staff to farmer ratio of 1:817 which is lower than the ideal 1: 400. There is urgent need to recruit more personnel in this field so as to increase the ratio and also replace those staff who by attrition have left or are leaving the service in the next five years. 65% of the current extension staff are beyond the age of 50 and, therefore, prudent human resource management is required so as to have a smooth succession.

Extension staff requires regular training to keep up with fast changing farming technologies. More resources should be directed toward capacity building of staff so as to make them relevant.

All agricultural research for the region is under the mandate of KALRO in Kilifi County. The county relies on research information from this institution and also sister institution in Machakos (Katumani). Other services like soil analysis and maize aflatoxin level determination are referred to the National Agricultural Labs, Kabete.

Market Information services are still undeveloped in the county. One of the stakeholders in the county namely WHH/GAA has however started collecting market information in 3 major markets in the county.

Main Livestock Bred

Livestock keeping is practised mainly through pastoralism by the Orma, Borana, Wardei and Somali. The main livestock types are cattle, donkey, camel and goat. The most common breed are Orma-boran, Galla goats, black head Persian sheep.

Poultry keeping

Poultry is kept at household level by all communities in the county. The main type of poultry kept is indigenous chicken and ducks.


There are about seven ranches in the whole county namely Wachu-30,725ha, Kibusu-25,000ha, Haganda-12,000ha, Kitangale-20,000ha, Idasa Godana-51,000ha, Giritu-43,340ha and Kondertu-20,000ha. Out of the seven ranches only Idasa Godana ranch is active with about ten per cent area being exploited.

Main Fishing Activities, Types of Fish Produced, Landing Sites

The main types of fish produced in the county include Tuna, Catfish and Rabbit fish (marine species), Tilapia, and Synodontis. There are three landing sites namely Chara, Ozi and Kipini with the main fishing gear being traps, fishing nets, hooks/lines, fishing boats and marine seine nets. Fishing activities are carried along the river Tana and at the ocean at Kipini, Ozi and Chara. There is potential for fish farming in the area as was demonstrated by the Economic Stimulus Project where about 900 fish ponds were established across the county. Main fishing activities currently being undertaken in the county range from use dugout canoes, anglers, use of fish traps and modern fish boats (trawlers). The main fish species harvested range from fresh water fishes like protopterus, catfish, tilapia species and marine species including fin fishes and crustaceans (crabs, prawns, lobsters and octopuses).



Crops Production

A wide range of crops that include maize, cowpeas, cassava, coconut, cashew nut, bixa, cotton, simsim, citrus, and tomatoes among others are grown in the county under rain-fed system. Crops’ farming produce about 314,000 tons of both food and cash crops annually from 69,025 ha. The county is Kenya’s largest producer of cotton, simsim and bixa, producing approximately 40%, of cotton, 50% of simsim and 40% of bixa grown in the country, Kenya. This has significant implications on income generation, food security and poverty reduction efforts in the county. Crop production in the county for the last 5 years has remained rain-fed. About 80% of crops are planted during long rains and the remaining 20% during short rains. Short rains are not reliable for crops production. The drought experienced in the county in 2014 and 2016 and 2017 had impact on both food and cash crop production. The production of crops and their respective value are as presented in table below.


Production levels for both of bothfood and cash crops

Crops Yearly Production in Tons
2013 2014 2015 2016 2017
Maize 43,614 42,692 49,588 17,973 32,096
Rice 31.8 41.15 39.15 47 60
Sorghum 1,086 269.9 746 4.5 18
Dolichos Bean 344 786.7 468.8 433 46
Cow Pea 3,347 3,490 5,651 3,272 4,934

Value of crops is directly related to existing market price. Most farmers’ crop produce in the county are sold in raw form leading to low returns for farmers. Lack of structured marketing has allowed middlemen to exploit farmers by offering low prices.

Average Farm Sizes

The most commonly practiced farming system in the County is the small scale mixed farming comprising of crops, livestock and trees. The system is viable and economically feasible practised by about 11,000 small-scale farmers with an average individual farm size of 4 hectares. These small-scale farmers are the key target for agricultural extension services for improvement of agricultural productivity and production.

Main Storage Facilities

There has been a high level of produce post-harvest losses occasioned by pests and diseases, lack of proper handling, lack of storage facilities and poor market infrastructure. Although there is an NCPB depot in the county with a capacity of 40,000 bags of 90 kg, the depot only stores grain reserves mainly sourced from upcountry for relief and commercial purposes. At farm level, storage facilities are inadequate, inappropriate and are in deplorable conditions which have made smallholder farmers unable to cope with pests and diseases mainly due to high cost of control measures. The cooperatives in the county are in poor state and are not able to provide adequate storage infrastructure to the members.

Agricultural Extension, Training, Research and Information Services

Provision of extension service in the county is mainly by the government. The public extension service aims at enhancing adoption of new farming technologies to improve crop production and incomes. However, the effectiveness of extension services has declined due to inadequate research-extension-farmer linkages, lack of demand-driven research, low staff: farmer ratio and low budgetary allocation to support extension service delivery to farmers to understand and apply the acquired knowledge. Private sector, Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) and civil society players have not effectively complemented public sector extension in the field. The few who are in the county may lack professionalism and also disseminate conflicting extension messages to our farming community.

The existing agricultural institutions have not been fully utilized by farming community and stakeholders in the county to acquire knowledge to improve production and income. Agricultural research infrastructure in the county mainly deals with on-farm trials for technology testing and adoption. An overriding challenge for both public and private sector extension provision is how to mobilize sufficient resources to provide the required services and formulate a strategy for increasing private sector participation.

 Farm Input and Credit Accessibility

The access to affordable credit is inadequate and therefore remains a major drawback to finance procurement of inputs and capital investment in areas such as value addition technologies, irrigation infrastructure and general farm development. The prevailing high interest rates regime and difficulty in administering loans in rural areas like in Kiunga, coupled by short grace periods offered by banks makes accessibility to credit for financing agriculture to be relatively unattractive.

The inputs quality control and inspection personnel is absent ain the county and this has encouraged unscrupulous businessmen to stock and sell low quality and substandard farm inputs. This has lead to low productivity and output at farm level.

Agricultural Markets and Products

Market access is critical to the development of agriculture and irrigation sub-sector. In Lamu County, there are only two physical markets for farm produce: one at Amu and the other one at Mpeketoni which are administered by the county government. Markets in other areas of Witu, Hindi, Kiunga and Faza are in form of vegetable kiosks situated in the town centres and along the major roads. The kiosks mainly sell vegetables, fruits and cereals sourced from local farmers. The volumes of farm produce available at these markets in the whole county vary with seasons leading to fluctuations in prices. There gaps in marketing information system which make producers and consumers not regularly receiving market information. Processing facilities in the county are inadequate and have continued to constrain marketability of particularly perishable goods such as fruits and vegetables. There is only one known processing unit, the out dated Mpeketoni ginnery that have left farmers sell their crop produce in raw form. The co-operative societies in the county are inadequate and weak due to poor governance and corruption that has made it difficult for farmers to adequately market their produce for maximum returns. The only operational cooperative is Lake Kenyatta Cooperative Society Ltd based in Mpeketoni. 28

Sustainable Land Use Practices

The county continues to experience accelerated loss of forest cover, drying of watering points and increased soil erosion. At the farm level, farmers are faced with the problem of land degradation impacting negatively on crop production mainly due to reduction of soil fertility, increased soil compaction and reduced water infiltration. Some farming practices such as shift cultivation and “slash and burn” practiced mostly in Lamu East and the indiscriminate bush clearing (“Witemere”) in Lamu West exacerbate degradation of the land

Main livestock breeds and facilities

The main livestock species reared are Cattle, Sheep, Donkeys, Goat and Poultry. Cattle and goats are reared in 2 rearing systems: Pastoralism mainly practiced in Hindi (Kibokoni, Kilimani and Bargoni), Mkunumbi (Ndambwe, Mkunumbi, Koreni), Bahari Ward (Mlei, Lake Amu) Hongwe war Lumshi A&B, Pangani) Witu ward (Moa, Chalaluma, Didewaride, Nagele, Kitumbini, Nairobi area).

Agro – pastoralists occupying pockets of Hindii (Ndeu, Kauthara, Show ground); Mkunumbi (Mapenya, Bangure, Mwamarani, Majembeni, Mkindunu) Bahari ward (Town, Bahari, Kihongwe) Hongwe ward(Hongwe, Bomani, Umoja, Kibaoni) Witu ward(Soroko, Kona mbaya, Maleli, Katsaka Kairu,Witu mjini) Dairy cattle and dairy goats farming/ rearing is practiced mainly in all settlement schemes areas of Hindi ward, Bahari ward, Hongwe ward, Mkomani ward and Witu ward.

Donkeys, a major draught animal are reared mainly in Amu (Mkomani and Shella Manda) and Pate (Faza ward) Islands, where it is the main source of transport.

Honey production is mainly practiced around the Boni forest areas of Basuba and Witu wards. There is though a high potential of honey production utilizing the vast mangrove forests bordering the Indian Ocean in the county.

Indigenous Chicken is reared in almost all the homesteads of Lamu County with flock size ranging between 5 – 10 chicken per household. The indigenous chicken ecotypes reared includes: Mirimiri, Mwaruhe Mbete (Dwarf), Kidemu (frizzled feathers ), Inglishi(Naked neck), Kuchi(predominantly Lamu East) and chitsutsu. Of late we have Kari Kienyeji, Kuroiler and Kenbro.


There are 20 ranches/grazing reserves in the county are in four Status i.e. operational ranches which are four (Witu Nyongoro DAC Ranch, Witu Livestock Cooperative Ranch, Amu Cooperative Ranch and Mokowe Kibokoni Cooperative Ranch). The other ranches are idle and not operational.



Main Crops Produced

The main crops grown are in the county are cereals (Maize, sorghum, Rice), pulses (beans, cowpeas, green grams, , pigeon peas), root crops (cassava, and sweet potatoes), horticultural crops (kales, tomatoes, cabbages, French beans, snow peas, capsicum, Asian vegetables), fruit crops (bananas, mangoes, oranges, passion fruit, guavas), nuts and oil crops (macadamia, groundnuts, sunflower, coconut, cashew nut) fibre crops (cotton, sisal), emerging crops (jojoba, moringa, mushroom, aloe vera, jatropa).

Acreage Under Food and Cash Crops

The county has 2,909.9 Km2 of total arable land, whereby 74% is used for low potential agriculture as it receives an annual mean rainfall of 440mm. The hectarage under food and cash crop production in the County is approximately 18,125 ha and 3,296 ha respectively.

Average Farm Sizes

The average farm size in the highlands is 0.4 Ha, translating into low yield per unit area for most farming households. For small scale farming in the midlands and lowlands, the average farm size is 1.5 Ha and 4.8 Ha respectively.

Main Storage Facilities

Though the county has National Cereal and Produce Board stores in Voi and Taveta, the main storage facilities used by most households are improved granaries, traditional stores and living houses.

Agricultural Extension, Training, Research and Information Services (Available Training Institutions, Demonstration Firms’ Multiplication Sites Etc.)

Taita Taveta University is the main training facility in the county, KALRO Katumani and Mtwapa are the main research and information sources. The County further has multlipication centres at Bachuma and Mwatate.

Main Livestock Breeds and Facilities


The County is a major livestock rearing zone, with the main types of livestock being beef cattle, dairy cattle, goats, sheep, camels, donkeys, poultry, bee keeping, rabbit and pigs. Chicken is the main poultry reared, although guinea fowl quills, turkeys, geese, ducks, peacock, pigeons are emerging poultry. Other emerging livestock enterprises that are yet to be exploited include ostrich farming, crocodile farming, tortoise farming, snakes, silkworm farming, snail farming and butterfly farming in select parts of the County.

The county has two diagnostic laboratories, 73 cattle dips, 89 cattle crushes, 28 slaughter houses, 4 artificial insemination sub stations, four rural tanneries and twenty-one skin bandas. Common animal diseases in the county include foot and mouth disease, lumpy skin disease, black quarter, anthrax, rift valley fever, goat pox, sheep and goat pox, contagious bovine pleuropneumonia, contagious caprine pleuropneumonia, trypanosomiasis, anaplasmosis, babesiosis, helminthiasis, brucellosis, new castle disease, gumboro, fowl typhoid, fowl pox, and rabies.

Ranching (Number, Ownerships and Activities)

Approximately 4,100 Km2, 24% of total County land area, comprises of rangeland suitable for ranching and dry land agriculture. The County rangeland forms one of the disease-free zones under Vision 2030, aimed at supporting production of livestock products for export. Ranching is therefore a major avenue through which beef cattle are produced, with the County having a total of 28 ranches, with 10 of these owned by the government under the Directed Agricultural Company (DAC) arrangement. The other major categories of ranches are private and group ranches, with quantities of these being seven and six respectively. Individual group ranches are four while there Taita is only one ranch owned by a cooperative society, located in Wundanyi. The average ranch size in the County is 12,762.5 Ha. The livestock reared in the ranches include goats, sheep, camels and cattle.

 Apiculture (Bee Keeping)

Beekeeping is well established in Kenya and can be successfully carried out in about 80% of the country. It is especially suitable in the semi-arid areas where other forms of land use are less reliable. Beekeeping contributes to incomes and food security through provision of honey, beeswax and pollen as food and propolis, bee’s venom and royal jelly in medicine. It also contributes to seed and food production through crop pollination and conserves the natural environment. Kenya produces an estimated 25,000 MT of honey and 3,000MT of beeswax valued at Ksh 3.5 billion annually.

In addition, to the above achievements, the livestock industry has a high degree of vertical linkages within the sector. For instance, the industry is an important market for feeds, drugs and equipment manufacturing enterprises and is a provider of raw materials for agro-processing industries.



Crop, Livestock, Fish Production and Value addition.

This section gives the main crops produced in the County, acreage under food and cash crop, main storage facility, fish production, livestock breeds and number of ranches available in the County.

Main crops produced

The main crops grown are: watermelons and sweet melon, mangoes, vegetables, tomatoes, paw paws, bananas, cowpeas, simsim, rice, sorghum, maize and green grams. These are usually produced on a small scale under irrigation along the River Tana. In the hinterland it is under rain fed farming. There is huge potential for value addition on mangoes, tomatoes and water melons.

Acreage under food and cash crops

The total acreage under food crops in the county is about 3,200 Ha while that under high value horticultural crops is 4,000 Ha. Food crops are mainly found in the hinterland but along River Tana both are farmed.

 Average farm sizes

The average farm size in Garissa County is 1.5 hectares for small scale and 20 hectares for large scale. These are individual group farms dominantly found along River Tana.

 Main storage facilities

The main storage facilities are raised shafts within Manyatta huts and shopping centres. There are also five National Cereal and Produce Board (NCPB) stores located in Garissa town each with a capacity of 4,500 metric tonnes. These are mainly used for the storage of relief food.

 Agricultural extension, training, research and information services

Public extension services to farmers are operational from the sub county, wards and village levels. The farmers are reached through individual and group visits, field demonstrations, field days, shows and exhibitions. There is one research station – KALRO, one farmers’ training centre, a number of model demonstration farms and the ASK show which is now dormant.

The current agricultural extension staff are 53 (29 men and 24 women) while livestock staff are 132 which consists of 114 male and 18 women. The number includes both Livestock and Veterinary department. However, the extension manpower is inadequate at all levels and the vastness of the county makes service delivery critical challenge.

 Main livestock breeds and facilities


Livestock rearing is the backbone of the county’s economy. The main livestock bred are cattle (Boran), goats (Galla), sheep (black headed Persian) and camel (dromedary one humped). The main livestock products are meat, milk, hides and skins. The estimate numbers of livestock by 21

type are 1,104,184 cattle, 1,089,870 sheep, 1, 947,163 goats, 486,000 camel, 165,000 donkeys and 215,000 poultry.

During the dry season, there is a general migration of livestock from the hinterland to areas near River Tana where water is readily available. However, some pastoralists move with their livestock to adjacent counties of Tana River and Lamu in search of pasture. Much of the County’s livestock population are indigenous sheep, goats and cattle, found in the southern parts which receive more rain while camels occupy the drier north.


There are no ranches in Garissa County and there is limited potential for this activity.

Apiculture (bee keeping)

Bee keeping activities exist on a moderate scale but with a huge potential yet to be fully exploited. Hives used are log hives, KTBH and langstroth. A total of 82 apiaries exist in the county with 7,644 bee hives.



Crop, Livestock, Fish Production and Value addition

Agriculture is practiced in depressions and along drainage lines where there is more moisture due to seasonal flooding. Irrigation using underground water is limited in areas with permanent shallow wells. Due to the aridity of the county, food production is limited and contributes little to food security.

Efforts have been put towards increasing crops productivity in the county, but over reliance on relief food has been a major hindrance in achieving food & nutrition security. Other setbacks include; inadequate funding, inadequate technical support (extension), inaccessibility of markets especially by farmers, costly farm inputs and unreliable rains. Livestock production activities are practiced county wide. Poultry keeping is more pronounced in Wajir town& Habaswein. Livestock population density in the county is low due to the low land-carrying capacity of the rangeland. Droughts, livestock diseases and pests adversely affect livestock development in the county.)

There is limited value addition of agricultural and livestock products. There is slight progress in value addition of milk &camel meat (Nyirinyiri). The County is in the process of establishing export standard abattoir in Wajir town and tannery in Buna. The Potential for the value additionwater melon, milk and meat remains unexploited.

Main crops produced


Main crops produced include sorghum, drought tolerant maize, beans, melons, cowpeas, green grams and horticultural crops like mangoes, citrus, kales, spinach, tomatoes, sweet and hot peppers. These activities are undertaken in small scale. There is need to explore the adaptability of these crops to the changing climate. However, there are indications of huge potential in this sector as witnessed by the water melons flooding the markets across the county during rainy season.

Acreage under food and cash crops

The acreage under food and cash crop is negligible with most of the farmers adapting the nomadic pastoralism due to the climatic conditions which are not favourable for crop farming.The acreage under food crops is approximately 3,120 Ha with the total arable land being 42,425.2 sq. KM.There are efforts to increase the acreage under farming through irrigation whereby the County Government of Wajir has excavated several mega water pans for irrigation.

Average farm sizes

Farms are small scale with average holding of 2.4 Ha. Crop activities are carried out in Wajir North, Part of Wajir South, Tarbaj, Eldas, Wajir East and Wajir West. There are initiatives by development partners and the department of agriculture to promote farming across the county to enhance asset creation and improve livelihoods.

Main storage facilities

The main storage facilities in the county include Silos, grain banks and granaries. Silos are mainly used for storing relief food supplies. National Cereals and Produce Board in Wajir town stores all relief food before distribution.

Agricultural extension, training, research and information services (available training institutions, demonstration farms’ multiplication sites etc.)

The agriculture sector offers extension services mostly on demand to farmers. In addition, there are trainings carried every year to equip farmers with the necessary skills. There is need to establish demonstration farms used for farmer capacity building. Research has not been given priority in the county and hence there is need for sufficient funding to ensure continuous research in agriculture and livestock sector. Information flow need also to be enhanced especially in the areas of early warning systems as well as contingency planning. There is one livestock training centre (GPTC) which trains livestock officers.

Main livestock breeds and facilities

The main types of livestock are cattle (mostly Borana type and dairy crosses), sheep, goats (dominantly Totenberg goats), camels and donkeys. Poultry keeping is more pronounced in Wajir Town. According to the 2009 population and housing census, there were 794, 552 cattle, 1,406,883 sheep, 1,866,226 goats, 115,503 donkeys and 533,651 camels. The production of milk and meat is estimated at 3,875,940 litres and 191,100 Kgs respectively per year

Ranching (number, ownerships and activities)

The county has no ranches with most farmers practicing nomadic pastoralism. The pastoral production in the county has not been commercialized because the road infrastructural is poor and the markets have not been improved to enhance creation of commercial ranches in the county. There is a potential to open up communal ranches for grazing management, disease free zones, commercialization and conservancies.

Apiculture (Bee keeping)

The main beekeeping activities are traditional in nature. The county has great potential for beekeeping especially in Tarbaj, Wajir north and along Ewaso Ng’iro belt. This can be expanded and modernised as key alternative livelihood for both youth and women empowerment.



Main Crops Produced

Agriculture is one of the main economic engagements in Mandera, coming only second to pastoralism as the county’s income earner. The county grows maize and cowpeas, mostly in the irrigation belt of Mandera East,Lafey and Banisa. The same crops are also grown in the agro-pastoral zone of Mandera West and the hinterlands of Lafey, Mandera North and Mandera South. Fodder for livestock is grown in the irrigated livelihood zone.

In the irrigated livelihood zone of Mandera East, North, Lafey, and Banisa, horticulture is practiced and there is great potential for fruit and vegetable production.

Mangoes, papaws, melons, guavas, lemons and bananas are the main fruits found here. Kales, onions, tomatoes, capsicum, coriander and pepper also do well in the County. Mandera County largely relies onits own production for most of the vegetable and fruit needs. Oil crops grown in the county include sesame (simsim), sunflower and groundnuts.


Acreage Under Food and Cash Crops

There are no cash crops grown in the county. The acreage under food crops is steadily increasing. The acreage of the food crops is shown in the table below

 Average Farm Sizes

The average farm size ranges between 1-2ha and these are dominantly found along Daua River. Farm sizes in the rain-fed areas are between 5-15ha, and in some cases, more.

Main Storage Facilities

The National Cereals and Produce Board silos, the traditional granaries and in-house storage provide storage for food crops harvested in the county.

Main Livestock Breeds and Facilities

Mandera County is endowed with good environment for livestock production. The County Government conducted livestock census in 2014 to obtain reliable data that could be used for planning, development and policy formulation on matters related to livestock. The specific objective was to obtain information on livestock population, types of livestock, livestock-related products, and other variables necessary for developing information-based Master Plan for the County’s livestock sector.

As at 2014, the county had 863,625 head of cattle, 1,016,970 camels, 3,415,484 goats, 1,164,238 sheep, 56,874 chickens, 23,388 beehives, 141 bee apiaries and 208,126 donkeys. In addition to this, the county government procured 12 dairy cattle to train riverine farmers on dairy production and breeding. This population of dairy cows has increased to 28.

The county government has set aside 16 acres of land and an initial KShs 50 million to set up a regional veterinary lab for livestock disease surveillance and control. This centre will also be utilised in studying and upgrading the quality of animals to increase production of milk, meat and associated products.


There are no known ranches in the county, though there is potential that needs to be exploited by initiating ranches/ranching in the form of group ranches or individual ranches through proper paddock and rotational grazing system.

Main Fishing Activities, Types of Fish Produced and Landing Sites

Mandera County’s fisheries sector has constructed several fish ponds, eight (8) of which were left for farmers’ benefit, while four (4) were given for institutional use. The department also sponsored training on fisheries development for 300 farmers from across the county and established a GOK farm hatchery at Bulla Hajji to assist in production of fingerlings. This has resulted in the increase of fish and fish products. In addition, the county enabled the formulation of animal feeds at the GOK farm. The County Government ensured the production of a variety of fish species in Daua River. It has enhanced productivity in the fishing industry by distributing fishing gear like lines and hooks, cooler boxes, as well as fishing nets.

The construction of enormous dams by the County Government on the upper side of Daua River to ensure continuous flow of water within the river will definitely address the problems associated with hibernation, thus making fish abundant. Mandera County enjoys the benefits of harbouring up to 160km of the Daua River. This natural resource can be harnessed by the communities for aquaculture.

Apiculture (Beekeeping)

Beekeeping or apiary is one of the new trends in the county, accepted as a source of livelihood by locals. Apiculture is largely practiced in Banisa and Mandera West sub-counties.



Main Crops Produced


Crop production in Marsabit County does not thrive well because of erratic rainfall and increasing incidence of recurrent droughts. There are however some areas around Mt. Marsabit and in Moyale sub-county where crop farming is practiced during the rainy seasons. The population working in agriculture is estimated to be about 2 per cent. Main cash crops grown in the county include fruits and vegetables, maize, teff, beans and millet. Fruits grown include oranges, avocados, banana and mangoes. Khat (miraa) is also grown for commercial purpose in Saku Constituency and part of Moyale. Miraa is grown for commercial purposes while fruits trees are produced mainly on a small-scale and for domestic consumption and for sale in local markets.

Acreage under Food Crops and Cash Crops

The total area under food and cash crop production is 5,060 ha. However, the county has great potential for crop production with an area of 1,582,750ha being arable. Much of the area is underutilized due to erratic climatic conditions.

Average Farm Sizes

The average farm size in the county is 0.8ha while farms with title deeds are approximately two per cent. The farms are concentrated on mountain regions of Saku and Moyale constituencies. The rest of the land is communally owned grazing areas.

 Main Storage Facilities

The main food storage facilities include bags and wooden granaries found in urban centres. In addition, there are a few modern stores such as silos owned by the National Cereals Produce Board (NCPB) located in Moyale and Marsabit towns. The facility at NCPB store cereals, fertilizer and seeds for sale to farmers and for relief food distribution by government and development agencies.

Agricultural extension, training, research and information services (available training institutions, demonstration firms’ multiplication sites etc.

In the county, agriculture extension services are mainly provided by the county government, and research and training institutions, and also by the civil society organizations, such as non-governmental organizations, faith based organizations and community-based organizations. The extension services are provided through

i)                   demand driven and beneficiary led approach,

ii)                 indigenous knowledge and technologies sharing,

iii)               cost sharing with beneficiaries and

iv)               networking/collaborations. Farmers and livestock keepers are reached through various extension approaches such as trainings, on farm demonstrations, field days, trade fairs/exhibitions, exchange visits/ tours and training of livestock keepers in grazing areas.

In the past, the government had a demonstration farm in Sagante ward which served as a learning farm where various farming approaches and technologies are show-cased. This however, does not existing now and related ideas would be good for the on-site learning by farmers. The county also work with research institution like Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organization (KARLO) to generate and apply knowledge in specific context.

Main Livestock Bred


Livestock keeping is the main economic activity in Marsabit County. The main livestock kept include approximately 420,000 cattle, 2,029,490 goats, 1,851,452 sheep, 217,360 camels, 81,900 donkeys and 45,860 chicken. There are 5,890 beehives/apiaries in the entire county. The main livestock products are milk, beef, mutton and camel meat.

Milk production has significantly decreased across the County when compared to last month. An average of 19 litres was produced in the month under review compared to last month’s 51 litres. Most households are reporting consumption of less than one litre in a day. This is normal at this time of the year.  Milk consumed is mainly from camels in pastoral livelihood while Agro-pastoral mainly relied on cattle milk. Most of the urban population and other centres are depending on packet milk from local kiosks. A litre of milk costs Ksh 80-100 with prices being higher in Agro pastoral Livelihood zones (Ksh.90-120) than pastoral Livelihood zones (Ksh.70-90) which is normal at this time.

Number of Ranches

There are no registered group or company ranches. However, different communities have their own grazing areas that are managed communally under reciprocal grazing arrangements. In periods of extreme drought, there are incidences of sporadic resource based conflicts when communities migrate over long distance and compete for grazing fields.

Apiculture (bee keeping)

Apiculture is one of the enterprises with potential for growth in the county. The county has a total of 5,890 assorted bee hives, with groups living on the fringes of Marsabit forest, Mt. Kulal and other isolated pockets with forest and woodlands. However, there are no established honey refineries in the county, which is a constraining factor in value addition and processing of honey products. Bee-hive products that enter the food market include honey and propolis. Bees-wax which is a main hive product that is used in the manufacture of candles are not utilized in the county.



Irrigation infrastructure and schemes

Irrigation potential

The irrigation potential county wide can be put at more than 2000 hectares, however not more than 30% of this is under irrigation. The county‟s agricultural activities largely depend on irrigation since rain fed agriculture is not sufficient in most areas. Bisan Adhi, Kinna and Waso Nyiro rivers are the main rivers for irrigation. The Ewaso Ngiro irrigation clusters falling on both side of the river had its own challenges. The Malka Daka, Merti and Gafarsa was started with the help of FAO and collapsed due to floods in 1982. Gafarsa scheme was re-constructed in 1984 by French Embassy in 1986 and again collapsed in 1996 as result of floods during El-nino. Merti irrigation done by CEFA in 1998 also collapsed in 2002 due to floods. The major challenge was the river bunks have alluvial deposits which are highly unstable making it a problem for any irrigation infrastructure to be put in place except Kubi Qallo. The Kubi Qallo site if developed can give a permanent solution for EWaso Nyiro irrigation clusters and hence enhance food security in the region.

Irrigation schemes

There are twenty irrigation schemes in the county. These are Iresaboru, Malkadaka, Garfarsa, Kinna, Rhapsu, Guba Dida, Darazani, Korobesa, Mata Arba, Mlanda Nur, Bulesa, Biliqo Marara, Gambella, Kambi Seikh, Kakili, KilimaniGame Galana, Ntirim, Oldonyiro, Elsa Ntirim, Akideri and Bulesa

Crop, Livestock, Fish Production and Value addition.

Main crops produced

A large portion of the county is arid and cannot support rain fed crop farming. However, irrigation farming is practiced along Ewaso Ngiro River, Isiolo central and Kinna. The crops produced include maize, sorghum, beans, green grams, nerica rice, cowpeas, dolicos, kales, tomatoes, onions and watermelons. The fruit trees grown include pawpaw, avocados, citrus, mangoes and guavas. They are usually grown together with crops for subsistence and commercial purposes. They act as wind breaks and improve on soil fertility.

Acreage under food and cash crops

Agriculture is both rain fed and irrigated, the hectares under food crops is small. There are only 1,500 hectares under food crops production. However, the area under food and cash crops is expected to increase by 2,000 hectares once Kilimani –Game Galana, Gafarsa, Malkadaka and Rapsu, irrigations schemes are rehabilitated.

Average farm sizes

The average farm size is one acre. The relatively small average farm sizes is explained by the fact that most of the areas in the county are not suitable for rain-fed agriculture and reserved for grazing.

Main storage facilities

There is a National Cereals and Produce Board depot in Isiolo town storage, 2 community stores (1 in Kinna and 1 Gafarsa) and a no of privately owned stores for food storage in the county.

Agricultural extension, training, research and information services

Agriculture extension is carried out by technical staffs that are distributed across the county. There is a farmers training centre located within Isiolo central and it serves the whole county. Trainings and on-farm demonstrations are carried out where farmers learn about crop and livestock production technology.

Main livestock breeds and facilities

The backbone of the county‟s economy is livestock sub-sector. Over 80 percent of the inhabitants rely on livestock for their livelihoods. Nomadic pastoralism is prominent in the county and defines the lifestyle of most of the county‟s inhabitants. It has had a negative impact on the environment due to the tendency of overgrazing caused by overstocking. Intensive dairy production is less prominent economic activity in the county but lately gaining importance as a business with increasing urban demand.

The main cattle breeds are Zebu and Boran which are drought resistance breeds and are kept mainly for beef production. Goat breeds include the Galla (main), the small east African, Saanen, toggenberg, the swiss alpine and many crosses of local and exotic breeds. The black head Persian breed is the dominant sheep breed in the county. The major breeds of camels found in the county are the Somali, Turkana and the Rendille/Gabra. Poultry breeds include the local chicken and to a small extent exotic broilers and layers in urban areas. The markets for the county‟s livestock are mainly in Nairobi and other neighbouring counties. In order to sustain the livestock industry in the county several measures and policy interventions need to be put in place to improve the industry and to mitigate the negative effects of overstocking.

Oldonyiro Division: Increased number of livestock traded from 20,000 livestock in 2013 to 30.000 livestock in 2017. Increased in acreage of improved pasture from 3000 acres in 2013 to 5000 acres in 2017.  Number of operational policies supporting livestock trading in the 448 % increase in the number of people employed in the livestock meat trade 36,014 (2013) % increase in the total number of cattle, sheep and goats sold in Isiolo town 8M Increase in annual  of livestock meat.

Animal Health Situation and Service Delivery

The earlier listed livestock breeds are not only drought but also disease tolerant. However, the commonly found diseases that impact on trade are CCPP, S&G Pox and PPR in small stock, LSD, FMD, and CBPP in cattle. In camels it is Pox and Trypanosomiasis. A number of other diseases are endemic throughout the year. Though a vaccination regime, surveillance and a real-time reporting system exists, a more structured approach is required.


The county has no ranches. However, a ranch neighbouring Lewa Wildlife Conservancy is used as a fattening area for livestock bought from Isiolo County. Moreover, through five NRT facilitated conservancies (Nakupratt-Gotu, Leparua, Biliqo-Bulesa, Nasulu, and Oldonyiro Community Conservancy) as fattening grounds and migration areas. The NRT through its trading arm, NRT-Trading has been supporting communities in these conservancies by way of commercial livestock off takes.


The county has potential in bee keeping, however this has not been achieved because of challenges like drought, inadequate investment among others. Cooperation with stakeholders to enhance bee keeping in the county as an economic enterprise is required. The county has one micro private honey refinery in isiolo town which is currently operating below capacity because of low honey production. Potential areas include Oldonyiro, Isiolo central, Merti and Kinna.



Irrigation Potential

The agricultural potential of Meru County has not been fully harnessed due to widespread reliance on rain-fed agriculture. The rains are often not enough and this results to massive crop failure. The lower parts of Tigania and Buuri sub-counties have vast land resources and are more adversely affected by drought. Development of irrigation infrastructure in these areas would boost food production and improve food security in the county.

Crop, Livestock, Fish Production and Value addition

Main Crops

The economy of Meru is primarily agrarian. The growing of a variety of crops and keeping livestock in some parts of the county form a critical chunk of the economic activities of the people of Meru. The Greater Meru is endowed with soils and climatic conditions that allow for the production of a variety of commodities including wheat, barley, potatoes, millet, sorghum and maize. High grade tea, coffee, bananas and Miraa (Khat) are the key cash crops. The Meru were indeed the first Africans to grow coffee in Kenya in early 1930s upon the implementation of the Devonshire White Paper of 1923. Other crops include groundnuts and a wide range of legumes, vegetables and fruits. crop farming ( especially miraa farming).Igembe sub county. Estimated at 11,000 megatonne estimated at value of 7.1 Billon Kenyan shillings from the year 2018-2020. According to last year’s return of 9.5 Billion Kenyan shillings.

Average Farm Sizes

The average farm size differs from one agro-ecological zone to another. It ranges from 0.2Ha in the tea/dairy zone to over 2Ha in the lower midlands. This therefore calls for adoption of modern technologies to counter the effects of increasing pressure on land.

Main storage facilities

There is inadequate large scale storage facilities in the county. There are two National Cereals and Produce Board (NCPB) depots in Meru and Maua. The NCPB depots mainly handle the government subsidized fertilizer and occasional relief food supplies. Produce storage is mainly done at individual farm level where the facilities are both inadequate and inefficient. This results to high post-harvest losses as well forcing farmers to sell produce immediately after harvesting, a time when prices are low due to over-supply.

Agricultural Extension, Training, Research and Information Services

The only government training facility in the County is Kaguru Agricultural Training Centre located in Imenti South Sub-County. The institution trains farmers and hosts workshops for staff under various programmes. Agricultural Mechanization Services station (located in Mitunguu) is the other government institution which offers mechanization services to farmers. Every ward has at least two technical officers in the agriculture sector who offer extension services to farmers. This workforce is inadequate.

Main Livestock Breeds and Facilities

The Meru County farmers keep livestock both for subsistence and commercial purposes. These include dairy and beef cattle, goats, sheep, poultry and honey bees. The main livestock facility in the county is the Kinoru livestock resource centre (KLRC) which is a diagnostic facilty as well as the county’s artificial insermination programme centre. The tables below show the livestock population, the quantities of their products products as well as the existing livestock facilities within the county;


The County has four company ranches whose land size averages 1000 ha. The major activities carried out include cattle and sheep rearing. The Lewa ranch, one of the company ranches also acts as wildlife conservancy.


Fish production in the County comprises of both aquaculture and to a small extent, capture fisheries in rivers and Dams. Riverine fisheries is however not fully exploited. Aquaculture is mainly practiced in upper and medium zones, which have adequate water for fish production. The County has aquaculture potential of 10,000ha. There are over 3,000 fish farmers practicing pond culture at subsistence level. The main fish species cultured are Tilapia, Catfish, common Carp and Trout in high altitude areas (Meru County Fisheries Annual Report, 2015)



Crop, Livestock, Fish Production and Value addition.

Main Crops Produced

The main occupation of the people in the county is agriculture, which include crop and livestock production. The main food crops include; maize, beans, cowpeas, sorghum, green grams, millet, pigeon peas, and bananas. The cash crops include tea and coffee grown mainly in Maara and Chuka/Igambang’ombe constituencies. However, farmers from Tharaka grow green grams and sorghum as a food and cash crop.

Tea and coffee planting. Maraa and Chuka sub divisions. Estimated production of coffee is 9,252 megatonne while tea is estimated to be 1,594 megatonne.

Acreage under Food Crops and Cash Crops

An estimated 80% of the county population is engaged in agricultural activities. Approximately 43,799 hectares is under food crops while cash crops cover 14,839 hectares. Crop farming is mainly rainfall dependent and is therefore characterized by frequent crop failures especially in Tharaka areas. Improved infrastructural support service is required to increase agricultural output. Access to high yielding drought tolerant crops and the provision of subsidized agricultural inputs can enhance productivity in the agricultural sector.

Average Farm Sizes

The average size of small-scale farms is 2.9 ha and 6.7 ha for large-scale farms. Maximum utilization of natural resources available in the county, use of modern technologies and innovations will ensure higher crop yields for the county.

Main Storage Facilities

The county experiences post-harvest losses up to 30% due to poor storage facilities and post-harvest handling, for cereals and legumes, the losses are higher for horticulture produce. This leads to loss of income occasioned by the post-harvest losses and also sales at low prices due to lack of adequate storage facilities.The main storage facilities are traditional granaries, farmhouses and market stalls. It is important to capacity build farmers on how to establish and maintain proper storage facilities. The traditional granaries at the community level need to be improved as well as investing more in community grain stores. However, with combined effort of both National and County government modern storage facilities have been established at Mitheru and Mukuuni while two others are being proposed at Marimanti and Mukothima. This will boost cereals and grain handling thus significantly reducing post-harvest loses. Horticulture is highly perishable. To promote productivity by avoiding post-harvest losses, there is need to invest in a modern cooling facility along the horticulture priority value chains.

Agricultural extension, training, research and information services

There is no available training Institution within Tharaka Nithi. The county depends on Kaguru Agricultural Training Centre based at Nkubu, Meru County. There is need to develop one ATC within the County.

Main Livestock Breeds and Facilities

Livestock keeping is one of the main sources of livelihood for the residents of Tharaka Nithi County. The main livestock in the county include cattle, sheep, goats, pigs, poultry, rabbits and beekeeping. Cattle breeds kept include Friesian, Guernsey, Ayrshire, Jersey and their crosses while borans, sahiwal, zebus and crosses are kept in the lower areas. Milk marketing is a major income earner for the Tharaka Nithi residents especially Chuka/Igambang’ombe and Maara. The County is a major producer of dairy goats and dairy goat milk where Toggenburg dairy goats and their crosses are kept. Meat goats kept include the Galla goats and other indigenous breeds. Poultry kept include chickenboth exotic and indigenous, ducks, turkeys, geese, quails and doves. Keeping of improved indigenous chicken breeds such as kuroiler, rainbow rooster and Kenbro has been on the increase. Other animals kept in the county include pets (dogs and cats) and donkeys. Value addition on livestock products and improved access to improved breeding stocks is crucial for farmers to reap maximum benefit from livestock enterprises.


Though there are no ranches in the County, the Marimanti sheep and goats’ station serves as a breeding station for Galla goats.

Apiculture (bee keeping)

The Mount Kenya forest, wide rangelands and vegetation cover is suitable for honey production, which is mainly marketed locally in raw form though there is little refining value addition. The construction of the honey refineries within the County will improve access to markets and value addition



Crop, Livestock, Fish Production and Value addition


The agriculture sector continues to play a vital role in the rural economy. The sector was one of the first to fully devolve the function of service provision to the county governments underscoring the importance of County Governments’ role in ensuring food security. Agriculture is key to Kenya’s economy, contributing 26 percent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and another 27 percent of GDP indirectly through linkages with other sectors. The sector employs more than 40 percent of the total population and more than 70.1 percent of Kenya’s rural people. Majority of the population in the county derive their livelihood from crop farming Page 21 of 439 Embu County Integrated Development Plan 2018-2022 and livestock keeping, which accounts for approximately 87.9 percent of the County population.

Main crops produced

The main crops produced in Embu County are classified into three categories namely; food crops, industrial and horticultural crops.

Acreage under food and cash crops

Acreage under crop measures the average number of acres planted to a particular program crop for a specified year The major crops produced in Embu County. it is evident that maize is the main food crop produced in the County. Green grams and cow peas are other leading food crops produced in Embu County, hence the need to focus more on value addition for these crops. Main Horticultural crops Horticulture is the science and art of growing fruits, vegetables, flowers or ornamental plants. In Embu county horticultural crops grown are mainly fruits and vegetables.

There is to need to focus more on value addition of these horticultural products.

Industrial crops

Industrial crop is a non-food crop grown as raw material for other industry rather than for direct human consumption. It also acts as a cash crop.

Average farm sizes

The average farm size is about 2.7 acres per household according to a survey report (Household Baseline Survey Report 2014) done by Agriculture Sector Support Programme in collaboration with Kenya Agriculture and Livestock Research Organization) KARLO and university of Nairobi.

Main storage facilities

Most of the households use the traditional cribs, improved granary and stores to store their cereals. The main storage facilities are National Cereals and Produce Board stores at Majimbo in Embu town and Ishiara market. In Siakago town a grain store was put up under economic stimulus programme but was not completed before devolution. The county government of Embu completed this project and it is now ready for use with a capacity of 50,000 bags. Mbonzuki grain store Mbeere south constituency was fully supported by the county government and is 90 percent completed. Other storage facilities in the County include, community owned Kalabari food bank in Muminji ward, former cotton board store in Mbeere South and coffee factory facilities spread in the coffee growing areas.

Agricultural extension, training, research and information services

These are public institution carrying out the mandate of general extension in Embu County. The main ones are: AMS Machang’a, ATC Embu and ATDC Siakago. In due course, other Agricultural institutions will be formed. AMS Machang’a is an institution with a broad objective of carrying out farm mechanization that generally describes the on-farm and off-farm application of tools, implements and machinery as inputs in agriculture. ATC Embu generally trains farmers on good agricultural practices. ATDC Siakago on the other hand trains and equips farmers with appropriate farm technologies to enhance production. Besides provision of land preparation services, The Agricultural Machinery Service (AMS Machang’a) has been instrumental in the construction and maintenance of soil and water conservation, and drainage structures as well. There is one (1) Agricultural Technology Development Centre (ATDC) in the county but with a national mandate. The traditional mandate of ATDCs included; agricultural mechanization; agro-processing, renewable energy and storage. Following devolution, the changed mandate of ATDCs will be to assist the National Government in influencing policy applications, monitoring and evaluations in agricultural subsector. Further the Centres will ensure Quality Assurance through machinery, equipment and implements testing and evaluation. The county has one ATC but has to be relocated because the institution currently sits on University of Embu land. Within this 5-year period, it is envisaged that the county and other stakeholders will put up an ATC at an estimated cost of Ksh 90.7 Million.

Main livestock breeds and facilities

Livestock farming is gaining popularity with the revival of milk cooperatives and investment by private sector and county government on dairy value chain. Dairy farming is concentrated in Manyatta and Runyenjes sub-counties while in Mbeere North and Mbeere South, indigenous breeds are reared. The main types of animals reared include cattle, goats, sheep and chicken. Rabbit rearing has also become an attractive venture to the farmers.

Main fishing activities, types of fish produced, landing sites

The main types of fish in the county include; trout, tilapia, mud fish and cat fish which are available mostly in the hydroelectric dams. The government through the Fish Economic Stimulus Programme constructed 200 fish ponds in each of the four constituencies and the fish harvest is usually sold locally. The Agriculture department has not only undertaken farmer training and supervised the construction of fish ponds but also supplied 200kg of fish feed and 1000 fish fingerlings per pond to the farmers.

 Apiculture (bee keeping)

 Most bee keeping activities are practiced in Mbeere North and Mbeere South constituencies where there are 74,004 beehives while in Manyatta and Runyenjes constituencies; there are 26,972 beehives. Most bee keepers in Mbeere North and Mbeere South areas use traditional methods while most in Manyatta and Runyenjes constituencies apply modern methods of bee farming. Improvement and commercialization of apiculture will contribute towards food and nutrition security and increase income. The apiculture industry has been constrained by destruction of natural habitats, insufficient research on beekeeping technologies and honeybee biology, ineffective pest control and lack of coordination among various actors. The arid and semi-arid lands yield only crudely processed honey for urban markets. Introduction of better technology hives can significantly improve the yields and quality of bee products. Local marketing systems should be strengthened through organization of traders and bee-keepers. To enhance the market competitiveness, honey requires improved processing, quality assurances and branding



Crop, Livestock, Fish Production and Value addition

Main crops produced

The economy of the County is dependent on agriculture, which contributes to rural employment, food production and rural incomes. The level of food self-sufficiency in the County is 51%, however approximately 10 percent of the entire population is absolutely food insecure. The 32 sector plays a major role by contributing about 87.3% of income earned by the rural population. The main food crops grown in the County include cereals such as maize, sorghum, and millets; pulses such as green grams (Ndengu), cowpeas and pigeon peas; root crops such as cassava, sweet potatoes and arrow roots; industrial crops such as cotton, sisal and sunflower, and horticultural crops represented mainly by fruits such as mangoes, pawpaw, and water melons as well as vegetables such as tomatoes, kales, onions and bullet chilies. The total annual average crop production is 80,680MT for cereals valued at Kshs. 4.24 billion, 771MT for industrial crops valued at Kshs. 29.04 million and 36,950MT for horticultural crops valued at Kshs. 990 million. County crops are grown as sources of food and income and production is mainly dependent on rain. Rainfall in the County is not only inadequate but erratic thus necessitating the use of irrigation to augment food production.

Acreage under food and cash crops

Kitui has the potential to be a major food producing County in Kenya if appropriate agricultural interventions coupled with irrigation-based crop production are adopted. Currently, the average acreage (hectares) under food production is 192,325 compared to a potential of 400,000 for cereal crops; 298,277 compared to a potential of 380,000 for pulses; 350 compared to a potential of 2,000 for cassava; 907 compared to a potential of 170,000 for industrial crops (sisal, cotton and sunflower); 2765 compared to a potential of 16,500 for fruits, and 1170 compared to a potential of 84,500 for vegetables, respectively.

Average farm sizes

The types of farms in the County are mainly smallholder which integrates crops and livestock production. The average small-scale farm size in the County is estimated at 4.38 hectares and 50 hectares for large scale farms (ASDSP HH Baseline Survey, Vol. 1, 2014). The small-scale farms are common in densely populated areas around Kitui and Mwingi towns, areas of Migwani, Matinyani, Kyangwithya East, parts of Kyangwithya west, Nzambani, upper parts of Mulango and Mutonguni. A few large-scale farms especially of sorghum and green grams are found in Katutu, Kanyonyo, Kwa Vonza, Kanyangi, Mutomo, Ikutha and Kanziku. Other largescale farms under free range livestock production system are found in Kyuso, Sosoma-Engamba, Tseikuru, Muumoni, Mui, Kanyonyo, Endau, Malalani and Mutha areas.

Main storage facilities

There are four National Cereals and Produce Board stores in Kitui County located at Kyuso, Mutitu, Kitui, and Mwingi towns. In addition, 38 aggregation centers spread across the County have been identified but are not well equipped for storage at the moment. The total storage capacity for the County is 500,000, 90-kg bags. Crop produce losses due to post-harvest handling and management and inadequate availability of storage facilities and structures at household level in the County is high.

Agricultural extension, training, research and information services

There is one Agricultural Training Centre (ATC) and one Agricultural Mechanization Station (AMS) in Kitui County. The two institutions are located at County headquarters in Kitui town. The ATC hosts demonstration plots while the AMS provides agricultural mechanization services through which they generate revenue. There is therefore need to open up branches of ATC in 33 every sub-county to enable many farmers to access modern agricultural technology transfer with ease.

Main livestock breeds and facilities

The main livestock types kept in the County are cattle (beef and dairy), goats (meat and dairy), sheep and poultry (indigenous and exotic). Farmers have also ventured into apiculture. Livestock cushions farmers against adverse condition especially in times of drought. The sector largely contributes to income generation and food security in main livestock zones. In LM4, LM5, IL5 and IL6 it contributes approximately 40-50% of total household incomes while in UM3 and UM4 it contributes 20-30% of household incomes. The County annual average production levels for various livestock enterprise products are as follows; 3,077 tonnes of beef, 1466.6 tonnes of goat meat (Chevon) and 70 million eggs, 4.2 million liters of milk and 960 tonnes of honey against the estimated potential annual local demand of 32,120 tonnes of meat, 100.4 million liters of milk and 171.6 million eggs. Rangeland and pastures occupy about 1,048,728 hectares, which is about 80% of the County. The livestock carrying capacity is approximately 4.4 hectares per Livestock unit (LU). The Zebu constitutes 97% of breed kept while Boran and Sahiwal account for 3%. Over 55% of beef cattle are found in AEZ IL6 and 40% in UM 4 and IL5. The balance of 5% is found in UM3 and UM4. The preferred dairy breeds are Ayrshire, Friesian, Guernsey and Jersey and their crosses in that order. The main goat meat breeds are the Small 34 East African, Gala and their crosses, whereas the main dairy goat breed is the Toggenburg (95%) and a few German Alpine (5%). The County annual hides production is estimated at 11,709Kgs valued Ksh. 1,813,680 while for goats, sheep and calf production is 239,835 pieces with an estimated value of Kes. 21,850,380. There are 71 slaughter slabs across the County though majority slaughter goats. Cattle are slaughtered in the following areas, Kitui town, Mwingi town, Mutomo and Kabati markets. There are no industries in the County to process hides and skins into leather and its products. Poultry includes domestic fowl, ducks, quails, turkeys, Guinea fowl, and geese. The most common poultry kept is indigenous chicken which is integrated in farming by over 90% households in the County. Farmers in the suburbs of major urban centers rear exotic breeds of poultry for egg and meat.

Ranching (number, ownerships and activities)

The County has five cooperative ranches namely; B2 Yatta Ranch 53,000 acres, Nziu Ranch 76,000 acres, Sosoma Ranch 150,000 acres, SEKU and GASP ranches. The Nziu and Sosoma ranches are no longer operational. SEKU and GASP are being run by the South Eastern Kenya University and the Catholic Diocese of Kitui respectively. B2 Yatta is owned by a Co-operative Society thus is classified as a group ranch, while Nziu and Sosoma are institutional ranches. Ranching is a very important production system for beef enterprise development and breed improvement. The annual income accruing from the three ranches in the County is estimated at Kes 916 million. However, the ranching production system faces a number of challenges.

Apiculture (Bee-keeping)

Beekeeping has been practiced in Kitui County since time immemorial. It is viable and sustainable form of farming because of the amount of land considered as rangeland standing at over 70% and rainfall that support adequate vegetation necessary for bee foliage. Honey is produced mainly from traditional log hives by individual farmers locally referred to as ‘Ikuli’. Most beekeeping activities are concentrated in Mwingi North, West and Central. Notable production is also seen in Kitui Rural, East and South. The bulk of beekeeping and honey production equipment are log hives which account for 95% of honey produced locally. Modern hives are few and account for a paltry 5% of honey production. There are 120,000 traditional hives and 10,387 modern hives in the County. The bulk of the honey estimated at 960 tonnes per annum valued at Ksh 290 Million is harvested from traditional hives. The modern hives produce an estimated 94 tons of honey with a value of Ksh. 28 million according to 2013 to 2015 average production figures. Honey from Kitui is still held in high regard. Small scale value addition is being undertaken by Mwingi Honey Cooperative. The County government is also promoting production and processing of honey through establishment of 16 honey processing units. Beekeeping is an enterprise with a lot of potential for improvement for honey production and income generation. The enterprise can be an important base for sustainable development of cottage industries in the County.



Crop, Livestock, Fish Production and Value Addition.

Main Crops Produced

Approximately 60% of total land area in Machakos is arable. Agriculture is the main activity carried out in most of the sub-counties. The main cash crops are coffee, mangoes, citrus, french beans, pineapples, flowers, sorghum and vegetables. The food crops grown include maize, beans, pigeon peas, green grams, cowpeas and cassava which are cultivated in small scale. The County aims to increase the productivity of arable land through use of quality farm inputs, appropriate mechanization, irrigation and good agricultural practices. From the above table, maize and beans are the main food crops grown across the County with 62,000Ha and 38,000Ha respectively. Mangoes and coffee are the major cash crops with 6,000Ha and 5,000Ha respectively.

Average Farm Sizes

The average farm size for small scale and large scale farming are 0.756Ha and 10Ha respectively. The County is experiencing a constant decline in arable land due to climatic change risks and change in land use mainly from agriculture to real estate development.

Main Storage Facilities

The main storage facilities of food crops are National Cereals and Produce Board depots located in Machakos town, Konza, Kithimani town and Tala town. Other storage facilities are individual on-farm stores.

Agricultural Extension, Training, Research and Information Services

The following agricultural institutions are located within the County: • Machakos Agricultural Training Centre • National Youth Service Yatta School of Agriculture • Athi River Meat Training Institute • Machakos University • South Eastern Kenya University Research Institutions • Kenya Agricultural Livestock Research Organization (KALRO) • Agricultural Mechanization Research Institute within Katumani • Machakos University • South Eastern Kenya University Demonstration Farms • Machakos Veterinary Farm • Machakos Agricultural Training Centre • Kenya Agriculture and Livestock Research Organization, Katumani Machakos County Integrated Development Plan, 2018-2022 26

Main Livestock Breeds and Facilities Source


Directorate of Livestock, Machakos County 2017 Between 2013 and 2017 there was general increase in livestock populations with indigenous chicken registering the highest growth in numbers. This is attributed to free indigenous chicks program being implemented by Department of Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries. There are 14 livestock markets distributed across 6 sub-counties where large scale livestock trading takes place. 


The County has 13 ranches namely Kasisi, B&T Malinda, Carol Malinda, Machakos ranch, Kyelu, Lukenya, Game ranch, Maanzoni, Kakenyi, Kapiti, Mwambi, New Astra and Lisa. Three (3) are located in Machakos Sub-county while thirteen (13) in Mavoko Sub-county. The livestock in these ranches include cattle, sheep and goats. Machakos County Integrated Development Plan, 2018-2022 27


Mavoko and Machakos Sub-counties have the highest honey and wax yields and income while the lowest yields and income are in Kathiani and Mwala Sub-counties. The highest honey price is in Kangundo at unit price Kshs 800 while the highest wax price is in Kathiani at unit price Kshs 500




Agriculture, Livestock and Commercialization

The key focus area will be driven by the Agriculture, rural and urban as well as the trade sector. To ensure continuity in the momentum of agricultural growth in the county, strategic interventions under this key focus area are organized in a value chain approach; production, value addition, and trade and commercialization. The three broad value chain concepts ensure that programmatic interventions are holistic and that agricultural productivity is market driven.

 a. Outcome 1: Increased agricultural productivity through adoption of appropriate technology


To realize this outcome, the government will implement the following strategies:

Strategy 1: Fruit and other horticultural crops development and marketing

The county operationalized the Makueni Fruit Processing Plant and hence the need to sustain supply for optimal operation of the plant. Specific programmes and projects will include: i. Support establishment of fruit producing farmer cooperatives linked to Makueni Fruit Processing Plant through tailor made extension services; ii. Support the establishment of fruit nurseries and link them to the fruit producing cooperatives; iii. Purchase of reconstituting line and a squeezer of ready to drink products; iv. Establish fruit orchards managed through various groups; and, v. Support vegetable production (export oriented vegetables) targeting new 1,200 Ha.

Strategy 2: Production, processing and marketing of drought tolerant cereals and legumes

 The county will promote climate smart agriculture to enhance production of cereals and legumes. Specific programmes and projects under the strategy will include: i. Promotion of climate smart agriculture practices; ii. Promotion of farm ponds construction; and, iii. Promotion of drought and disease tolerant crops production.

Strategy 3: Enhancing agricultural mechanization

Agricultural production in the county remains largely inefficient due to low mechanization. This strategy will involve hiring to farmers county machines at subsidized costs for production, postharvest, processing and marketing. Specific programmes and projects will include: i. Develop a mechanization framework/policy; and, ii. Establish a mechanization unit.

Strategy 4: Development and implementation of an integrated beef production and marketing program

This strategy will enable farmers to produce for the local and export market. Specific programmes and projects will include: i. Construction of an abattoir in Kambu; ii. Operationalization of a tannery factory at Wote; and, iii. Pasture development in the range lands in Kibwezi East.

Strategy 5: Dairy development

This will target an increase in milk production using improved AI, disease control and enhanced extension services. Specific programmes and projects will include: i. Enhance the artificial insemination program; ii. Establish an ambulatory and multi-purpose laboratory to enhance quality control in livestock production; iii. Promote zero grazing; iv. Intensify the extension programme.

 Strategy 6: Honey development

The current annual honey production is 110,000Kgs. The county intends to increase the production to 180,000 Kgs. Specific programmes and projects will include: i. Support farmers to establish bee apiary production farms in Makueni, Kibwezi East and West sub counties; ii. Establish a training and demonstration farm; iii. Promote the establishment of a honey processing plant; iv. Strengthen community forest associations.

 Strategy 7: Enhancing feed and fodder production for livestock development

This will be aimed at increasing feed and fodder to support livestock development. Specific programmes and projects will include: i. County wide range rehabilitation, pasture development and conservation; ii. Pasture development in gullies and denuded areas in Mbooni, Kilungu, Nzaui, Kibwezi West and Kilome; iii. Training community level workers on making soil and water conservation structures, and iv. Promoting pasture development in Kibwezi East and West sub counties.

Strategy 8: Crops and livestock pests and disease control

 Production of crops and livestock is hindered by diseases and pests. To improve the production, the county will undertake the following specific programmes and projects: i. Promote use of cost effective methods of pest and disease control such as fruit fly traps and other integrated methods; ii. Strengthen the veterinary public health function and enforcement of health laws and policies; iii. Establish a disease surveillance system within the county in order to reduce incidences of livestock diseases; and, iv. Establish a veterinary referral system and laboratory to support diagnosis.

 Outcome 2: Improved food security

The county government aims to make the county food secure by the year 2022. To achieve this, the following strategies will be implemented:

Strategy 1: Promoting irrigation, soil and water conservation

The county will promote household irrigation and engagement in conservation agriculture for increased household agricultural production targeting 18 wards. Specific programmes and projects will include: i. Promotion of run-off water harvesting targeting 50,000 households (HHs) to farm 50,000 acres in 18 wards; ii. Promote irrigated agriculture through kitchen gardens at HH level by subsidizing pond liners; and, iii. Support irrigation infrastructure along Athi, Muooni, Kambu, Kiboko, Kaiti, Thwake and Mtito Andei rivers targeting 10,000 Ha under irrigation.

Strategy 2: Enhancing access to production inputs (seeds, fertilizer and pesticides)

Access to inputs and credit is critical to increasing both agricultural and livestock productivity. This will be rolled out through a targeted subsidy programme. Specific programmes and projects will include: i. Promoting inputs through targeted input

s subsidy and policy; ii. Provision of certified seeds, fertilizers and pesticides; iii. Training youth to provide essential crop and livestock husbandry practices; and, iv. Regular inspections and training to farmers on inputs.

 Outcome 3: Reduced post-harvest losses


Strategies to be implemented to ensure reduction of post-harvest losses include:

Strategy 1: Post-harvest loss management

This will be through promotion of post-harvest loss management technologies and improving grain storage facilities. Specific programmes and projects will include: i. Improve and strengthen 13 existing grain storage facilities; ii. Operationalize Mukuyuni and Kambu grain drying facilities; iii. Establish a grain processing plant; iv. Establish the utilization of warehouse receipt system in the grain stores; and, v. Collaborate with the national government to ensure optimal utilization of the 3 National Cereal and Produce Boards in Emali, Wote and Kibwezi

. Strategy 2: Intensifying extension service programme and leveraging on technology

Extension services is the main driver towards adoption of appropriate farming technologies and techniques. In order to revamp the extension services, the county will implement the following projects: i. Establish 30 plant and livestock farmer clinics at the ward level to offer on-farm training; ii. Expansion of Makueni Agricultural Show; iii. Profiling and establish a database of all farmers; iv. Automating extension services to widen the reach of the extension services; v. Establishing an agricultural data and information management system (food and agricultural statistical and monitoring and evaluation system); and, vi. Strengthen fruit/milk producer organizations and cooperatives so that they can benefit from economies of scale.



Acreage Under Food and Cash Crops

The acreage in the County under cultivation is 96,062 ha out of the total arable area of 184,900 ha. Nyandarua County experiences rains for most of the year apart from areas in Lower Ndaragwa SubCounty that are relatively dry.

Average Farm Sizes

Both large and relatively small land parcels are evenly distributed across the County. Small portions of land are found within the areas initially designated as colonial labour settlements.  

Main Storage Facilities

Nyandarua County has three major storage facilities; two are Government entities (National Cereals and Produce Board in Lereshwa – Kipipiri and Ol’Kalou) while one is private owned (Midland Limited). Overall, these facilities can hold up to 215,000 bags.

Agricultural Extension, Training, Research and Information Services

The County has four institutions involved in agricultural training and services. There are two Agricultural Training Centres (ATC) in Njabini and Ol’Joro Orok. The ATCs are involved in training of farmers on farming techniques both in crop and livestock farming. The Animal Husbandry Industry Training Institute (AHITI) located in Gatimu offers courses on animal husbandry and the Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organisation (KALRO) located in Ol’Joro Orok conducts research and offers advisory services. There is also an agricultural mechanisation station which hires out agricultural machinery to farmers.

Main Livestock Breeds and Facilities

 Major livestock breeds are both indigenous and exotic. Cooling and pasteurising facilities exists in both Engineer in Kinangop Sub-County and Ol’Kalou though privately owned. Other facilities that exist with regard to livestock outputs are milk coolers owned by various dairy co-operative societies. Cattle dips are located across the County although their operations vary depending on their location and management. There is no processing plant for milk or any other livestock product. Animal Population and Projections Livestock 2018 2020 2022 Cattle 346,430 353,393 360,496 Sheep 382,522 421,731 464,958 Goats 88,429 97,493 107,486 Camels 0 0 0 Donkeys 12,229 12,352 12,475 Pigs 879 883 892 Indigenous chicken 579,966 701,759 849,128 Commercial chicken 55,000 56,106 57,233 Beehives 17,744 18,101 18,464 Rabbits 44,670 45,568 46,484.


Kipipiri Sub-County holds the only ranch in the County – Ol Magogo, which is run by KALRO. It occupies 300 hectares and mainly rears sheep and cattle.

Apiculture (bee keeping)

Aberdare forest is the main source of honey for the County with bee farming mainly practised by farmers in Ndaragwa Sub-County given the favourable weather and climatic conditions for apiculture. apiculture is also practised in Geta, Kipipiri and Kinangop Sub-Counties



Crop, Livestock, Fish Production and Value addition

Main crops produced

The main food crops grown in the county are maize, beans, irish potatoes and vegetables whereas the major cash crops are coffee, tea and horticulture. Tea is grown in the upper zone next to Aberdare’s and the Mt. Kenya forest while coffee is grown in the lower region. Cut flowers are mainly grown in Kieni sub county where there are large land holding sizes.

Acreage under food and cash crops

Total area under food crop is 80,943 hectares while 18,521 hectares are under cash crop production. Food crops are mainly produced on small scale, which is due to the smallholding sizes as a result of population pressure. The area under cash crops is limited since economical production requires large parcels of land.

 Average farm sizes

The average farm size is 0.7 hectares for small-scale farmers and 4 hectares for large-scale farmers. This is due to high population density though the farms are intensively utilized. Large-scale farms are mainly found in Kieni


 Main storage facilities

In the county, the main food storage facilities include; National Cereals and Produce Board in Kiganjo with a storage capacity of 100,000 metric tons; on farm storage granaries and in the farmers houses. Most farmers store their produce in their houses due to low production as a result of small parcels of land.

Agriculture extension, training, research and information services

The County has continued to offer extension services using different approaches such as farmer field schools, field days, group trainings, individual farm visits etc. Capacity building of both farmers and staff has been a priority and this has been done through residential courses and exchange tours. To enhance this the department has collaborated with research institutions such as KARLO Embu and ICIPE on farm trials for best agricultural husbandry practices. Demonstration plots have also been established for different technologies such as green house and drip irrigation. To enhance availability of clean planting materials, such as different types of fodders, sweet potato vines have been established in Kieni East, Kieni West, Mathira West and Wambugu ATC.

Main livestock breeds and facilities

The main livestock enterprise is dairy cattle. Other enterprises include poultry, pigs, goats, sheep and donkeys. The land carrying capacity (Livestock per hectare) is five. Bee keeping and other small stock such as rabbits; guinea pigs and quails are also on the increase.

Main fishing activities, types of fish produced, landing sites

The main fishing activities in the county are fish pond farming, dam and river line fisheries. There were a total of 2,343 households involved in the fishing activities with 2,488 fishponds, by the end of year 2016, spread across the county. The main fish species include tilapia, catfish, and trout. 36 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 No of farmers 2477 2513 2255 2343 1466 No of ponds 3011 2762 2519 2488

Apiculture (bee keeping)

Bee hives in the county are categorized as shown in the table below. Type of hive No. of hives No of farmers/groups KTBH 9,360 5,067 farmers Langstroth 3,076 1,956 farmers and 32 groups Log hives 6,580 105 farmers Others 226 7,128 farmer and 59 group    



Irrigation Infrastructure and Schemes


Most irrigation schemes practiced in Kirinyaga county are; Furrow, Basin and Sprinkler. In Mwea subcounty, they use Furrow and basin irrigation scheme/ flooding of water in rice paddies, while in Kirinyaga East they use furrow and few traces of sprinkler. Kirinyaga West and Central mostly use sprinkler irrigation. 

Crops grown under irrigation in Kirinyaga County include; Sweet potatoes, French beans, bananas, tomatoes, onions, rice. Also, currently in Mwea, East and West Arabica flowers are grown.

Rivers that facilitate irrigation are, Thiba, Nyamindi, Rwamuthambi, Ragati and Tana  

Crop, Livestock and Fish Production Agriculture

Is the most important activity in the county with 87 percent of the total population deriving their livelihood from the sector and accounting for 72 percent of household income.  

Main crops produced

The type of crops grown is influenced by the various ecological zones.

Main crops include rice which is grown in paddies in the lower zones and tea which is grown in the upper parts of the county.

Coffee is also a major crop grown in the upper and middle zones.

Other major crops grown include bananas, tomatoes, beans, mangoes, maize and other horticultural crops.


Acreage under food crops and cash crops

The total arable land in the county stands at area 116,980 Ha which represent 79 percent of total area. The total land under food crop production is currently 50,864 Ha and 31,244 Ha under cash crop production which shows that only 70 percent of the arable land is utilized in food production.


Average farm sizes

The average farm size for large scale farms is 5.2 Ha and 1 Ha for small scale farms. This is likely to change in future as the population increases and land is fragmented for inheritance.


Main storage facilities

Most farmers have small storage facilities in their homes for storage of dry grain products. However, there are 2 National Cereals and Produce Board (NCPB) silos located in Ndia Constituency, 2 Horticultural Crops Development Authority (HCDA) cold storage facilities located at Ndia and Mwea Constituencies, 1 National Irrigation Board (NIB) store in Mwea Constituency and 1 Kenya Planters Cooperative Union (KPCU) store located in Ndia. Most of these storage facilities are however underutilized due to large transport costs incurred by farmers and poor promotion about the existence of these facilities. 


Main Livestock Breed

There are 762,682 Poultry in the county comprising of 680,343 indigenous chicken, 55,578 Layers; 20,439 broilers and 5,162 ducks.

Cattle total which 98,899 and comprise 69,183 dairy cattle and 29,716 zebu cattle. The zebu cattle are mostly bulls’ used for cart pulling as well as in tilling the land. These are mostly found in the upper and middle parts of the county.

Goats total 73,978 where 48,960 are indigenous goats and are 11,068 dairy goats; the total number of sheep is 13,950.

Other livestock bred are bees with a total of 18,199 beehives in the county and rabbits with a total number of 39,491 being bred in the county. 


Agriculture, Veterinary, Livestock and Fisheries  

Sector brief The county department of Agriculture, Veterinary, Livestock and Fisheries based its 2013-2017 CIDP planning on the Country’s MTP II benchmark which was anchored in the Vision 2030 Blueprint.

The Overall goal of the sector was to attain food security and Increase Household Incomes. The sector aims at ensuring food security and prosperity thru innovative, commercially oriented and competitive agriculture. The goal of the sector is to be achieved through enhanced food production, Creation and maintenance of an enabling environment for development of agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries, Formulation and Implementation of appropriate agricultural policies and Strategies and employment creation. 

From a statistical perspective, agriculture is the main economic activity of the county. Over 72% of the citizens of Kirinyaga County rely directly or indirectly on agriculture. The key enterprises are Dairy, tea, coffee, bananas, horticulture, and rice. A key objective of the County Government is to improve productivity in these and other value chains with a view of raising rural incomes.  

The department has been laying its focus on implementing the following strategic objectives that are in line with the 2nd (SDG) Sustainable Development Goals which is to create an enabling environment and enhance institutional efficiency and effectiveness for agricultural development through: 

i. Increase agricultural productivity and outputs  

ii. Enhance institutional efficiency and effectiveness in implementation and extension 

iii. Identification of market opportunities and linking of farmers and producers to markets

iv. Increase livestock productivity and outputs

v. Increase fish production from capture and culture fisheries.


Agriculture and Rural Development

This sector comprises of the department of Agriculture, veterinary, Livestock and Fisheries and the Directorate of cooperative development


To improve the livelihoods of Kirinyaga people by promoting competitive farming as a business through

appropriate policy environment

effective support services and

sustainable agricultural base resources management


Sector development needs, priorities and strategies

In response to the sector vision and mission, the county has stepped up extension services making them target specific, more demand driven and customer oriented. This is aimed at ensuring farmers in the county enjoy comparative advantage in their areas of specialization. As indicated earlier, production in Agriculture has registered mixed results. Efforts will be geared towards increasing production in both crop and livestock sub sectors by creating an enabling environment for agricultural development through review of the current policy framework. In a bid to maximize output from farmers, the county will focus on value addition and marketing of produce.

There are several storage facilities for both food and cash crops though their utilization has not been optimal. Transfer of modern technology from researchers to farmers and enhanced liaison with the private extension providers like breeders, suppliers of veterinary drugs, dairy cooperatives and NGOs will be enhanced. Promotion of agro-forestry shall be advocated in extension services.  The government is addressing the land issue with emphasis on land ownership and settling squatters in South Ngariama scheme. Improvement of cooperative sector will be critical in marketing of Agricultural produce and other services like farm input supply, credit etc.




The main land use activities in the county are cash crop farming, subsistence farming, livestock keeping, fish farming, housing and forestry. 


Land ownership categories/ classification

Land in Murang’a County is classified into freehold or leasehold land. The county has a total area of 2,558.9Km2, of which 11.2Km2 is water mass. The arable land is, 2,135 Km2 while non-arable land is 163.3 Km2. The gazetted forest covers an area of 254.4 Km2 while approximately 20 Km2 is urban area. The average farm size under large-scale holdings is 6.4 ha. Total acreage under food crop farming is 180,225 ha while that under cash crop farming is  42,980 ha. 

The land under soil conservation is 55,780 ha; farm forestry is 108,352 ha while area under organic farming is 11,156 ha. The main land use activities in the county are cash crop farming, subsistence farming, livestock keeping, fish farming, housing and forestry. 

Percentage of land with title deeds Murang’a County is predominantly agricultural therefore, land holding is considered important. It is estimated that about 33,000 farmers have title deeds with a population of about 250,000 farmers. 


Irrigation schemes (small/ large scale)

Murang’a County has two main categories of irrigation schemes namely smallholder community irrigation schemes and individual/private schemes.

Smallholder community irrigation schemes: are initiated, owned, operated and managed by the scheme members. The majority of the schemes in Murang’a County fall under this category. Water for these schemes is usually abstracted from the rivers and conveyed to the farms by gravity through closed conduits for ultimate use. The most common water application method is the sprinkler system. These schemes further fall into complete and operational irrigation schemes, designed irrigation projects, proposed irrigation projects. Complete and operational schemes and designed irrigation projects have 12 schemes each.  

Individual/private schemes: are managed by companies or individual farmers. These private schemes are normally large scale farms that grow high value crops like cut-flowers, French beans, pineapples, coffee, etc. These schemes include: Delmonte Ltd, Kakuzi Ltd, Enkarsiti Farm, Simbi Roses, Aberdare/Thuita Farm, Bendor Farm in Gatanga Sub-county and Everest Farm Maragua Sub- County. The total irrigated area by the private/individual schemes is about 200 ha. Most of these schemes use pump-fed sprinkler and/or drip system.

To achieve the vision of being the model County in small holder irrigation in Kenya, the strategy recommends that immediate investments be committed in the short term towards completion of fifteen ongoing and the three fully designed projects that will enable it increase agricultural production from the current 60% to 90%. A detailed survey and design will also require to be undertaken for the twenty eight proposed irrigation projects. 

A feasibility study and detailed survey is recommended to be conducted for three mega dams and expansion of irrigated land from the current 1,000Ha to 9,000Ha in the medium term. The full implementation will only be realized when the County embraces water harvesting and storage and construction of Mega dams in the long term period whereby 30,000 ha can be realized by the year 2030.     


Crop, Livestock, Fish Production and Value addition



Main crops produced The major cash crops in the County include tea, coffee, avocado, mangoes, macadamia and horticulture crops, among others.  Horticultural crops include tomatoes, cabbages, kales, spinach and French beans while food crops include maize, beans, bananas, sweet potatoes and cassava.

Acreage under food and cash crops:

The acreage under food crops and cash crops are 329,234 and 177,636 respectively. The acreage under food crop is almost twice that of cash crop. Food crop farming is practiced in all parts of the county but cash crop farming is practiced in upper zones and in some lower zones of the county. 

Average farm sizes:

The average farm size for most of the county’s households is 1.4 acres. As a result of this, farmers are not able to produce large quantities of crops to warrant large storage facilities at household level.   Nevertheless, the average large scale farm size is 16 acres which are commonly found in the lower parts of the county and in tea, coffee, pineapples, mango, and flower estates.

Main storage facilities:

The storage facilities range from granaries to grain stores and milk coolers. Grain stores are found in NCPB outlets in Maragua town. Milk coolers are found in milk collection centres in Kigumo, Kangema, Kandara and Maragua. Granaries are found at household level due to small quantities of produce. Tea leaves and coffee berries are stored in their respective factories.

Agricultural extension, training, research and information services 

There is 1 training institution (Kenyatta Agricultural Training Center-Mariira farm) in Kigumo Sub-County. However, there are efforts to start a mechanization institution (Thai Farm) in Kambirwa augmented by other continuous agricultural demonstrations in farmers’ fields and schools. 



Main livestock breeds and facilities The main livestock bred in the county are cattle, pigs, goat, sheep, rabbits and chicken.

Exotic cattle breeds are found in the upper parts of the county while indigenous cattle breeds are found in the lower parts of the county.

Dairy and indigenous goats are spread all over the county but they thrive well in the lower parts.

Pigs are of different varieties and reared all over the county due to readily available market offered by Farmers’ Choice.

Rabbits and chicken are reared in response to demand for white meat.  

Ranching (number, ownerships and activities): The County has one company ranch owned by Kakuzi Limited of approximately 213 Acres. This is a private company listed in the Nairobi Stock Exchange.   

Apiculture (bee keeping) Apiculture in the County is underutilized with concerted efforts to improve it. Currently, there are approximately 11,962 beehives.   


Aquaculture Blue economy

The County is expected to spur economic growth by improving livelihoods and job creation in County.



There are 2392 fish farming families and 2511 fish ponds. There is need to increase the construction of new fish ponds and preservation of the existing ones. Aquaculture is an emerging fisheries enterprise in Murangá County. 

Main fishing activities, types of fish produced, landing sites By June 2017: Over 2,392 fish farmers owning over 2,511 fish ponds covering approximately 700,833 m2 (70.8 ha) were operating within the seven sub counties. However, there is a great potential in aquaculture, given the county’s vast water resources and high demand for some of the indigenous fish species in both the local and regional market.

TYPES OF FISH: Aquaculture fish include; tilapia, African catfish, rainbow trout, ornamental fish. Capture fisheries reared from rivers and dams are tilapia, rainbow trout and common carp.

Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries In agriculture sub sector’s planned projects

About 50% of them were implemented. However the establishment of the agro processing plants for value addition was not actualized due to inadequate funding. In Livestock sub sector, about 40% of planned projects were implemented.  About 80% of planned projects in veterinary sub sector were implemented even though some not to 100% completion. In Agriculture sector it is in fisheries where it was observed that most projects not being implemented due to inadequate funding.




Irrigation schemes (small/ large scale)

The county initiated 9 irrigation projects: Kamwamba, Gatina, Wamoro, Kawira, Kiruiru, Nyamuku, Karia and Waruhiu ATC. Water harvesting was promoted and 2 water pans were built; Kimuyu and Waruhiu ATC. Irrigation projects designed include Njuno and Chiboni Githongo.

Crop, Livestock, Fish Production and Value addition 

Main crops produced 

The main food crops grown in the county include maize, beans, Irish potatoes, bananas and vegetables. Although maize is the staple food, the county does not produce sufficient maize and beans to feed the population resulting to importation of cereals and grains from other counties. Banana value chain has developed with about 10 farmer groups engaged in basic banana processing into different banana products.

Coffee and tea are the main industrial crops grown especially in the upper and lower highlands of the county. There are 21 coffee and 3 pyrethrum co-operative societies which assist in marketing of coffee and pyrethrum.


Acreage under food and cash crops 

The county has a total arable land of 1,878.4 Km2 of which a total of 21,447 Ha is under food crops and a total of 35,367.41 Ha is under industrial crops.


Horticultural crops

Horticultural crop production plays an important role in the economy of Kiambu County.

Major vegetables include French beans, snow peas, kales, cabbage, garden peas, tomatoes, spinach and carrot among others.

Herbs and spices grown include dhania, basil, mint, rosemary, parsley and asparagus and are marketed within the country while others are for export market.

Pineapples are mainly grown in Gatundu North Sub County, while mangoes are mainly in Thika Sub County.

Avocado is grown across the county.

Floriculture was practiced in Lari and Limuru but farmers from other sub counties including Thika, Juja and Ruiru are now growing summer flowers for export.

Industrial Crops

Coffee and tea are the main industrial crops grown especially in the upper and lower highlands of the county.

Macadamia is an upcoming crop.

Production of pyrethrum is low in the county after farmers shifted to other crops.

There are 21 coffee and 3 pyrethrum co-operative societies which assist in marketing of coffee and pyrethrum.


Average farm sizes 

The average holding size of land is approximately 0.36 Ha on small scale and 69.5 Ha on large scale


Main storage facilities 

Farming in Kiambu County is mostly small scale due to subdivision of land into small units thus most of the food crop produced is for immediate consumption while surplus is stored in on-farm storages, granaries and also in house storage. However for the large scale production the main storage facilities available are the National Cereals and Produce Board (NCPB) silos. 


Agricultural extension, training, research and information services 

The county has extension officers deployed in the ward, Sub County and county levels. Waruhiu Agricultural Training Center (ATC) in Githunguri hosts both residential and non-residential farmer trainings. The ATC has a demonstration farm that farmers can access all year round. Eighty greenhouses and fish ponds have been set up as demonstration farms and are spread across the sub counties. Agricultural Mechanisation Service (AMS) based in Ruiru is an institution providing mechanization services to farmers across the county. Agricultural Technology Development Centre in Ruiru provides training to farmers  


Main livestock breeds and facilities 

Dairy industry is the leading enterprise with nearly 70% of the farm families keeping an average of 2-3 cows under zero grazing systems. Milk is the major livestock product in Kiambu county and currently leading in Kenya. Production has increased from 264,773,621 litres in 2013 to 308,818,919 litres in 2016. In order to facilitate milk value addition, eleven bulk milk coolers with a cumulative capacity of 39,000 litres have been procured and issued to farmer dairies including Muguga, Kiriita, Mangu, Karatu, Gatamaiyu, Ndumberi,  Bibirioni, Githiga and Ngewa. Two pasteurizers procured; one of 5000 litres installed in Muguga and another of 5000 litres per hour capacity for Kiambaa. 

Poultry and pig keeping continue to take precedence after dairy farming. Egg`production and pig production is the second, more so, in income generation. According to 2017 data provided by the department of

Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries

Kiambu County, Livestock in the county were as follows: 247,706 cattle, 139605 Sheep, 102366 goats, 2,550,523 poultry, 52588 pigs and 10227 donkeys. Agro-processing industries in the County include Brookside Dairies, Githunguri Dairies, Ndumberi Dairies, Limuru Milk and Palmside Dairies and local food processing factories such as Farmers Choice Ltd and Kenchic Co. Ltd. The county has 216 Communal cattle dips, out of which 7 are functional and 209 are non-functional.The presence of  Wangige wholesale market and Gitaru market for eggs; and Ndumbu-ini slaughter house for pigs continue to provide market outlet that favour the enterprises.


The main fish species farmed in the county is Tilapia and cat fish which are warm water species. Recreational fishery (sport fishing) is practiced mainly in Gatamaiyu fishing camp in Lari Sub County. The county has potential for cold water fish e.g. trout in Lari sub county.

Apiculture (bee keeping):

Apiculture (bee keeping; )Having known the importance of honey to human health, adoption of bee keeping in the county has gradually increased leading to an increase in the Kgs of honey produced as well as the farmers’ income. Beekeeping is scattered in the county and most farmers use Langsroth hives, Top Bar Hive and Log Hives. The production of honey has risen from 102,397 Kgs of honey produced in 2014 to 114,000 Kgs in 2017. The value of honey in Kshs has also increased from Kshs 51.2 Million in 2014 to 56 Million shillings in 2017.

Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries Sector composition

The sector comprises of three directorates namely

Crops and Irrigation, 

Livestock, – Veterinary, – Fisheries development 

Agribusiness & Marketing.


A Healthy, Food secure and Prosperous County 


To promote sustainable agriculture through capacity building on agricultural productivity, food and nutrition security, value addition, marketing, extension and infrastructural development. 

Sector goal 1. To create a favourable framework for sustainable development of the livestock, fisheries sector and provide support services that increase productivity, value addition and market access for the sector products 

2. To provide sustainable livelihoods, household food and nutritional security to families while contributing to socio economic development of Kiambu County.




Agricultural production is dominated by cereals. Households generally consume crops produced and sell the surplus for cash. Subsistence farmers grow sorghum, maize, cowpeas and green grams. Other crops include date palm, mangoes, local vegetables, kales, spinach, bananas and tomatoes.


Crop production

is restricted by the availability of water, soil nutrients, skilled labour, pests and diseases. The agricultural sector is often limited by poor transport, communication, storage and processing infrastructure. Food is imported from Kitale and Uasin Gishu counties, since most pastoralists do not practice crop farming.

Turkana has around 2.5 million hectares of arable land. Turkana’s soil is poorly developed due to its aridity and constant erosion by flood, water and wind. A stony layer often caps the soil, making agriculture difficult. Only about 30% of the county’s soil can be rated as moderately suitable for agricultural production.

In 2017, the County Agriculture Directorate reported a total of almost 7,245 ha under food crops, with 5,788 ha during the long rains and 1,457 ha under crops during the short rains (Table 1.10). This produces almost 4,000 metric tons of food, with an estimated value of just under KSh400 million.

Most of the county’s irrigation schemes – and consequently its most productive farm lands – are established along the banks of the Tarach, Kerio, Malimalite and Turkwel rivers. Moderately fertile soils are found in the central plains of Lorengippi, upper Loima and the lowlands of Turkwel, Nakaton and Kawalathe drainage, along the lake at Todonyang plains, the lower Kalokol and Turkwel-Kerio River, and a portion of Loriu plateaus.


Irrigation and agriculture

The county has over 51 irrigation schemes utilizing surface, spate and drip irrigation technologies, most of which are river-based. The schemes are not operating at optimum levels because of security, technical, infrastructural, and financial resource challenges. The largest irrigation scheme is Katilu irrigation scheme covering an estimate of 1,215 ha (GIZ, 2014). The schemes were developed in partnership with the national government through the National Irrigation Board and development partners such as World Vision Kenya, Catholic Diocese of Lodwar, WFP, NDMA/UNDP, FAO, Kenya Red Cross Society, FID, and Child Fund Kenya.

A small number of irrigation schemes have been started by farmers on their own, either individually or in small groups. These small-scale irrigation schemes have significantly alleviated poverty and increased food security in the region, whilst also improving environmental conservation (FAO, 2015). Just over a quarter of the conventional schemes are found in Loima but the majority of non-conventional schemes are in Turkana Central (GIZ, 2014).

The total land under irrigation is approximately 7,087 ha directly benefiting over 32,000 households. This is against a potential of 37,500 ha for the county (Oduor et al., 2012). Since 2013, the County Government has invested in expanding irrigated land, rehabilitating existing schemes and promoting new technologies. This initiative has put an additional 870 ha under irrigated crop production, thereby supporting the livelihoods of approximately 4,000 households. With improved flood control in the plains, there is potential to increase the area under irrigation to 10,000 ha, and 6,600 ha along the Turkwel and Kerio rivers respectively.

There is a growing interest in investigating the potential of irrigated agriculture to enhance the production of agro- pastoral and agro-silvo-pastoral systems, and community economic development. Successful irrigation schemes have been put in place, however in some cases salinity and nutrient depletion has diminished their utility.


Crops under irrigation

The main crops grown in the irrigation schemes in Turkana are maize and sorghum. Most are grown on subsistence farms measuring on average 0.2 ha. Turkana farmers grow maize, sorghum, millet, cow peas, and green grams.


The main horticultural crops

are vegetables, paw paws, watermelon and mangoes. Dates, guavas, grapes, lemons, oranges and bananas have also been tried in the county with some success. Key aspects of irrigated cropping and rain-fed cropping by sub-county are shown in Figure 1.26.

GIZ (2014) predicted the total production of the irrigation schemes to fall between 19 and 39 thousand tons and the income from this to be between 147 and 279 million KSH.


Flood potential and flood farming

Flood based farming systems (FBFS) depend on flood events that may vary in duration from a few hours to a period of months. The floods can form the basis of productive farming systems for crop production, livestock grazing or fishing grounds. Spate irrigation is used in short duration flooding events .  An evaluation by German Cooperation and GIZ identified Nakatwan, Kobuine and Kalapata as appropriate sites for introducing FBFS. In addition to these areas, the County Government has identified Kalemung’orok, Lokipoto, Nasinyono, Nanam, and Lokichoggio as potential areas where FBFS can be initiated. In 2016, the County Government financed construction of the 65 ha Lomidat Spate irrigation scheme in Turkana West.

In 2018, ICRAF in collaboration with Meta Meta based in the Netherlands and the International Water Management Institute (IWMI) are jointly implementing a project on testing adaptation in flood-based resource management. This four year EC-IFAD financed project covers eight countries. ICRAF is also partnering with the Department of Agriculture, Pastoral Economy and Fisheries. One of the key outputs for the project is an investment plan for flood-based livelihood systems in Kenya covering 10,000 ha in each of the five sites. The County Government has



Agricultural extension services are mainly provided by the County Government with some support from the partners. The County Government has employed agricultural extension officers to the ward level. Formal farmers training is through partners such as Furrows in the Desert (FID), which trains farmers in dry-land agriculture for a period of six months. The County Government is prioritising the establishment of a farmers’ training centre that will also act as a research centre. This will be handy in the training of farmers and testing of new technologies and new crop breeds and varieties.

identified Lomidat as a potential site for this research. The County Government in partnership with World Food Programme’s Asset Creation Project has utilized rainwater harvesting and management technologies to harness surface runoff for crop and pasture production.

Livestock in Turkana include goats and sheep, cows, camels, donkeys and poultry (mainly chicken) and pigs. Most of the breeds are indigenous. Products from livestock include milk, beef, mutton, donkey meat (known locally as epong), hides and skins, bones, hooves, eggs and poultry meat. The quantities produced annually are: milk 10 million L, beef 286 million kg, mutton 162 million kg, poultry meat 363 115.5 kg and 3 million eggs. The values of these products are estimated at: KSh165 million, KSh172 million, KSh130 million, KSh24 million and KSh45 million respectively.

There are 21 private stakeholders participating in the livestock value chain. The main livestock facilities are: two abattoirs, size class C, 34 operational livestock marketing facilities and one tannery. There are 22 hides and skins licensed traders.

The projections for 2017 have been based on an incremental increase assigned to different livestock figures.  The assumptions for these projections were based on continued rains following 2009, no major droughts and no major disease outbreak in livestock. It is estimated that the number of poultry (predominately chicken) is 228,077. Most of these breeds are indigenous.

Since land is communally held, there are no livestock ranches. However, there are pasture enclosures and designated wet and dry season grazing areas. The pasture enclosures are situated in Natira, Lomunyenakirionok, Kalobeyei, Nawontos, Nakabosan, Kaemuse, Kalemng’orok, Kotela, Ng’imuria and Lokipoto. The county has one holding ground at Lomidat Abattoir in Turkana West Sub-county. Napeililim holding ground in Loima Sub-county is under construction.

There is a need for rangeland mapping to enable the county to establish the potential of these resources in meeting pastoralists’ grazing needs and to develop strategies to fill any identified gaps. A key strategy for rangeland management is to further develop or re-invigorate rangeland management structures for ensuring livestock are managed in a way that continues to restore land and ecosystem function and grass production. It has been recommended that fast growing and hardy grass species be introduced for pasture (e.g. Cenchrus-ciliaris). To effectively manage the rangelands, adequate water sources for livestock must be created. This can be done through creation of rock catchments, sand dams, water pans, or sinking of boreholes along the animals’ migratory routes.

The national development blueprint Vision 2030 has identified flagship projects in the arid and semi-arid lands (ASAL) that can stimulate economic growth. To empower people socially and economically, support in the development of the livestock sector is crucial, especially by creating the right environment for economic growth to take place. To realise sustainable economic growth, enabling factors must be present including support to private businesses through the enactment of business- friendly laws and policies, the development of an enabling infrastructure, people’s participation in livestock value chains, and the promotion of alternative business opportunities. In the new Constitution, the responsibility of livestock development falls under the county governments. Given that the dominant livelihood option in the Turkana is livestock production, the efforts to lift people out of poverty should focus on investing in the protection and management of the most valued asset of the people, the livestock. While working with the national government on broader policy and regulatory frameworks, the County Government of Turkana will support pastoralists in developing and implementing pastoralist-friendly policies and programmes to promote economic growth, by managing and utilising the huge livestock resources in the county. To enable communities to be food secure, the Turkana County Government will work closely with the private sector and development actors to support and promote community participation in livestock economic activities. 

The drought in 2016 resulted in a collapse in the price of livestock. The price of cattle declined by 50% below the normal price in Turkana (UNOCHA ROSEA, 2016). The cross-border movement of people and livestock resulted in inter-communal conflict. An increase in livestock movement has been observed from Turkana (Kenya) into Karamoja (Uganda) and Nadapal (South Sudan).  The movement of livestock to Uganda is on many occasions necessitated by water stress rather than pasture depletion. The livestock congregate on riverbanks to access water and grazing which fuels conflict with local pastoralists and farmers (UNOCHA ROSEA ,2016). 

Drought incidences occur in Turkana County on a regular basis due to increasingly erratic climate conditions and ineffective water cycling. These drought episodes cause significant stress on the county, with loss of human life and increased rates of malnutrition due to inadequate food supplies and access to clean water, as well as loss of livestock. The National Drought Management Agency (NDMA) collects monthly early warning bulletins , which the county uses for planning and monitoring droughts. Information provided by the bulletins includes the following indicators: rainfall, vegetation condition index, pasture, crop production, livestock body condition, milk production, trekking distance to water sources, terms of trade, percentage of children under five at risk of malnutrition, and coping strategy index.

The challenges that face the livestock sector include: frequent droughts caused by climate change, leading to massive losses of livestock herds; violent inter-ethnic conflict; inadequate enabling infrastructure; cultural perspectives that limit the number of livestock that are released to the market; shortage of skilled personnel to provide quality extension services; low investment in livestock development; and poor coordination between national and county governments, especially on policy implementation.

Apiculture and Poultry


The recurrent and severe droughts in Turkana, and consequential malnutrition, led the FAO and government to introduce a poultry farming programme. The aim of the programme was to diversify and improve livelihoods of the rural communities. Training was conducted through Pastoral Field Schools, where farmers were taught poultry raising practices as well as fodder production. Twenty thousand chicks with improved genetics were introduced to the area (FAO, 2015). The chickens now form an important part of people’s diets and they are becoming an essential component of local livelihoods. Women are empowered as they are provided with an additional source of income and therefore social and economic independence (FAO, 2015).



Bee keeping has a high economic potential in Turkana County, however it remains underexploited. There are an estimated 6,921 beehives in the county producing an average of eight litres of honey each that translates to approximately KSh14 million. Honey production is predominantly for subsistence use. Other side products like pollen, beeswax propolis, royal jelly and bee venom production are currently not fully exploited.





Irrigation infrastructure and schemes


Irrigation Potential

The county total irrigation potential is estimated at 10,000 ha of which 1,800 ha is currently under irrigation. The importance of irrigation in the county cannot be over emphasized. The people living in the lowlands virtually survive on it. It is therefore a crucial activity. Irrigation is mainly carried out by groups of farmers using irrigation canals and furrows abstracting water from rivers and streams. There are a total of 120 canals/ furrows concentrated mainly in Pokot Central and the lower parts of Pokot South sub- counties.


Irrigation schemes 

There are several irrigation schemes which are complete while others are still under construction. The completed irrigation schemes are Ngorkal in West Pokot sub-county (20 ha), Kariamangole (60ha) and Mokuwo (90 ha) in Pokot South sub-county. The irrigation schemes under construction include the following Mrel (200ha) and Orwa (150ha) in Pokot central, Tamough (20 ha), Tombul (40ha) and Kochar (30ha) in West Pokot sub-county and Kolotubei ( ) in Pokot South.


Crop, Livestock, Fish production and Value addition


Main Crops Produced

The main food crops produced include maize, beans, sorghum, fingermillet, green grams, Irish potatoes, sweet potatoes and bananas.

The farmers also grow horticultural crops which include fruits (mangoes, pawpaw, oranges, tree tomato and passion fruit) and vegetables both exotic and local (onions, cabbages, kales, pumpkins, sucha, cowpeas, saga, peas and carrots among others).

The fruits and vegetables contribute immensely to food security as farmers use it for food as well as generate income to the households. 

Cash crops grown in the County include coffee, pyrethrum, sunflower and tea which still has small acreage. There is high potential to expand area under cash crops when market is streamlined.   

Maize is the staple food in the County and is mainly grown in the high rainfall areas of the county especially in West Pokot sub-county. Coffee is grown in West Pokot and Pokot South sub- counties while pyrethrum is grown in Pokot South sub-county. The food crops grown do not food requirements for the county. The farmers get low yields for food crops as they grown them on subsistence basis and some farmers do not use fertilizer and certified seed. The County government has subsidized the farmers through ploughing and provision of farm inputs to needy farmers.

 Pyrethrum farms had been neglected by farmers due to non payment of delivery of their flowers and problem of brokers. With establishment of cash crop directorate and liberalization of the market pyrethrum will come back to its glory and be able to improve the lives of farmers. The strategies which have been put in place will increase the acreage under the crop immensely.


Acreage for crops

The total acreage for crops in the County is 44.102ha. This consists of approximately 40,797 Ha of food crops, 2,785 ha of horticultural crops and 520 ha under cash crops.There has been an   increase in land under food crops due to development of irrigation schemes. Most of them are under construction while some are complete.The main challenges facing agriculture in the the county include high illiteracy levels among farmers, effects of climate change, low certified seeds and fertilizer usage,

pest and diseases and low extension coverage.Despite progress made, there exist huge potential for commercialized agriculture in the county.

Average Farm Sizes

The average farm size is 5 hectares and 25 hectares for small farmers and large scale farmers respectively. Land ownership in West Pokot Sub-county and parts of Pokot South has been adjudicated therefore farmers can access to credit. Pokot North, Pokot Central, parts of West Pokot and Pokot South are communally owned hence is difficult for farmers in these areas to access any credit.


Main Storage Facilities

National Cereals and produce Board provide the major storage facilities for cereals with a capacity of 150, 000 bags of cereals (90kg bags). These storage facilities are situated in Makutano, Sigor and Kacheliba. There are also two private storage facilities within the environs of Makutano while the others within farmers are small granaries which are prone to high post-harvest losses.


Livestock Breeds


Livestock Types and Breeds

The main livestock breeds in the county are the indigenous cattle (Zebu), sheep, goats, poultry and donkeys. Also introduced to the county are the dairy cattle, camels, Sahiwal cattle, Galla goats, dairy goats, dorper sheep, exotic poultry and rabbits. In terms of estimated population, there are 789,300 indigenous cattle, 74,500 dairy cattle, 200 sahiwal cattle, 634,355 indigenous goats, 6,000 galla goats, 400 dairy goats, 529,376 indigenous sheep 95,550 wool sheep, 4,000 dorper sheep, 533,000 indigenous poultry, 55,980 exotic poultry, 35,271 camels and 41,943 donkeys.These livestock types and breeds are distributed in all the four sub-counties in varied numbers depending on the climatic conditions and rate of adoption of introduced breeds. The estimated annual milk production for West Pokot County is 6,000,000 litres valued at KSh.200, 000,000. Most of this milk is sold through cooperatives’ which collect the milk in their milk coolers. Currently, there are fourteen (14) milk coolers most of them in Lelan and Tapach wards. Apart from milk, meat is another important product whose production is estimated at 4,140,000 kg valued at KSh. 750,950,000 per year. This is meat from animals slaughtered in butcheries within the county. Most of the livestock are sold as live animals to places outside West Pokot County. Such destinations include Western Kenya, Trans-Nzoia, Uasin-Gishu, Nakuru, Maimahiu, Nairobi and Mombasa.  From the local butcheries, about 5,000 hides and 50,000 sheep and goat skins are produced per year. 


Livestock Facilities

Livestock facilities in the county include office blocks, livestock improvement centres, Livestock holding grounds, hay sheds, cattle dips, metallic crushes and veterinary laboratories. 

There are seven livestock holding grounds in the county namely: Kacheliba, Pkopoch, Keringet, Kabichbich, Nasukuta, Runo and Lotongot. Other lands meant for livestock breeding camps, livestock water pans and grazing demonstrations were Kitelakapel, Kongelai, Kanyikeny and Murpus. Most of these are dormant and  therefore need to be revived or rehabilitataed for better livestock productivity. For example Kanyikeny has been earmarked for Beekeeping Research Centre and Kitelakapel for Pasture production,  livestock breeding and Nasukuta should be upgraded to into a Pastoral Training Centre.Among the holding grounds under use are Nasukuta, Keringet and Pkopoch. Nasukuta hosts a livestock improvement centre and an export slaughter house, while Keringet hosts an agricultural training centre currently proposed to be university.  Pkopoch hosts a pasture plot and hay store together with a county hotel under construction.

 Apart from the hay shed at Pkopoch another hay shed also constructed through DRSLP project is at Masol. The county government has constructed a hay shed at Nasukuta, There is need to construct more of these as they help store hay for dry seasons.Ninety-nine (99)

cattle dips and thirty-four (34)  metallic crushes have been constructed and more need be done as the are important in livestock disease control. Dips are more appropriate in the highlands while hand spray pumps and metallic crushes are more useful in the lowland.

 There is one satellite veterinary laboratory in the county which requires equipping. Six office blocks are in existence some of which are not complete and require completion and equipping. Some more need be constructed at sub-county and ward levels.There are five constructed saleyards and there is need to construct more for better livestock marketing.


There are no commercial ranches in the county. Group ranches have become dormant and are some are currently undergoing sub- division into individual parcels. There is need to encourage pastoralists to emrace ranching as a sustainable form of livelihood as opposed to currently practiced pastoralism.


Bee-keeping is an old practice among the West Pokot residents. Livestock department has continued to promote apiculture with emphasis on use of modern hives and equipment. There are about 149,478 bee hives producing approximately 1,196,000 kg of honey and 119,600 kg of wax annually.Most beekeepers sell their honey in crude form to traders within and outside the county. The main honey buyers within the county are CABESI in Kapenguria, Kodich Beekeepers’ Co-operative Society , Kitelakapel Cooperative Society and Kerio Valley Development Authority.These buyers process or semi-refine the honey before marketing.


This sector comprises of the following departments: Agriculture and Irrigation, Pastoral Economy, Lands, Physical Planning and Urban Development. Subsector: Agriculture and Irrigation


A secure and a wealthy County anchored by an innovative, commercially oriented and competitive agricultural sector


To improve livelihoods of the West Pokot county residents and ensure food security through creation of an enabling environment, provision of effective support servises and sustainable land resource management.

Subsector Development Priorities and Strategies

West Pokot County is endowed with high agricultural potential for crops and livestock. Agriculture is a fundamental pillar for sustainable development that seeks to meet the needs of present generation without compromising those of future generation. The department of agriculture contributes immensely to the economy of West Pokot County. There is need to empower and change the lives of communities of West Pokot to secure right of food, contribute to reduced poverty, increase household incomes, increase bio-diversity, and adopt agricultural methods which mitigate climate change.

The department will mainly focus on its priorities and needs in the Governor’s manifesto, public participation report and vision 2030 and creating facilitative laws, regulations and policies.  The priorities will target food security, improving the communities’ household incomes and improvement of farmers’ knowledge and skills.  These priorities and needs will be addressed through establishment of irrigation infrastructure, purchase of water pumps, promotion of traditional high value crops, promotion of cash crops, post-harvest management(cold stores for onions and Irish potatoes, cereal produce stores),fertilizer and seed subsidy, pest and disease surveillance and control(fall armyworm and maize lethal necrosis disease etc.), establishment of agricultural mechanization unit, establishment of demonstration plots, promotion of greenhouse farming, soil and water conservation and capacity building of staff and farming communities.  The legal framework needed to support the proposed development initiatives will also be put in place.



To be the leading sub sector in livestock productivity and protection of animal health 


To promote livestock production through value addition, enhanced productivity and sustainable development of fisheries 

Subsector Needs, priorities and strategies 

The needs for the  Department include:

recruitment of additional technical staff and improving staff welfare (promotion, provision of ofice uniform, equipment and tools) , transport (vehicles and motorcylcles),infrastructure (offices, laboratory, stores, electricity, water, internet/intercom connectivity),farm machinery and implements; rehabilitation of holding grounds; mainstreaming of cross-cutting issues (Gender, climate change, peace building, drought risk reduction, HIV/AIDS, etc).The priorities of the sub-sector during the  period 2018-2022 include: strengthening  extension services  through  field demonstrations, farmer s trainings and agricultural shows . Other priorities include :livestock breed improvement, beekeeping promotion,

establishment of  livestock strategic  feed reserves, range development (reseeding, enclosures, water harvesting), exposure tours,  establishing disease free zones, improving  access to  artificial insemination,

livestock marketing and value addition, establishment of  fish hatchery,

restocking Turkwel dam, expand  fingerlings distribution and

develop  sub-sector policies and legislations. The strategies to be adopted by the sub-sector to achieve the needs and priorities include: Provision of A.L. services, provision/introduction of superior breeds for livestock improvement; provision of pasture seeds and hay stores;provision of modern/improved hives; capacity building of staff and farmers; disease surveillance,

control and prevention; provision of monosex tilapia fingerlings;

resource mobilization ( collaboration, partnership




Irrigation infrastructure and schemes

The physical relief of the county offers a good catchment area for water harvesting for irrigation purposes among other uses. Seventeen potential sites have been identified as areas with adequate water for irrigation: Kurungu, South Horr, Arsim, Tuum, Anderi, Waso Rongai, Lulu in Samburu North. Amaya and Seiya in Samburu Central, and Kibartare, Ngilai, Lkerei, Westgate, Gogoltim, Loijuk, Nkutuk e Ngiron and Sasaab in Samburu East. 

Besides the named 17 potential sites there exist numerous mountain springs in the northern parts of the county covering parts of Nyiro division such as south Horr and Tuum which could be exploited for small scale irrigation schemes.

There is a need to conduct feasibility studies that will open up 3000 ha of land to be used for irrigation. Challenges are expected in land tenure systems, inadequate modern dry land farming techniques and mindset. Prolonged drought periods may deplete available water reservoirs through evapo- transpiration process.   

Irrigation schemes (small/ large scale)

Three community Irrigation Schemes are in

Kurungu (complete)

Arsim (75% complete)

Lulu (50% complete). 

These irrigation schemes will be utilized for the production of vegetables, cereals and fruits. 

A large scale irrigation scheme which is supported by the national government is underway at Tuum which is expected to boost high food production in the area.  


Crop, Livestock, Fish Production and Value addition


The main crops grown in the County include maize, beans, wheat, barley, pyrethrum and millet. These crops are grown in the highland areas of Poro in Kirisia Division. This is due to its fertile soils and adequate rainfall sufficient for rain fed agriculture. The maize value chain is currently being promoted by the Agricultural Sector Development Support Program (ASDSP).

Pyrethrum value chain is being introduced through support from Pyrethrum Processing Company of Kenya. Pyrethrum farming is relatively a new practice in the County. There are opportunities to promote other crop communities value chain in the county. Crop pest and diseases are the main challenges affecting the sub-sector. 


Acreage under food and cash crops

About eight (8 %) / 139,000 ha of the County is classified as arable land with adequate moisture to support crop farming.

Currently 28,500 ha of land is being utilized for crop farming. The county plans to increase maize yield to 35 bags per ha, beans to 18 bags per ha and cowpeas to 16 bags per ha through provision of certified seeds to enhance crop production.

Wheat, pyrethrum and barley are the main cash crops covering 8,053 ha of land. 


The average crop farm size

0.4ha per household for small scale farmers, especially in agricultural areas while large scale farmers have an average of 20 acres. The communities residing, especially in agriculturally potential areas within the County have embraced land adjudication.

Other parts of the County are majorly arid and practice pastoralism as the main economic activity. Green houses occupy small sizes of the farms.


The main storage facility

The County is at the National Cereal Produce Board (NCPB) silo located in Maralal town. This facility is mainly used to store relief supplies and farm harvests from local farms. The County Government is in the process of constructing two Cereals stores in Poro and Loibor Nkare areas. In addition, the government has two cereals driers each with a capacity of 80 bags. There is a need to construct more cereal stores next to irrigation schemes. 


Agricultural extension, training, research and information services (available training institutions, demonstration firms’ multiplication sites etc.)

Agricultural extension services in the county are mainly provided by the public sector, i.e. County Government, parastatals, and research and training institutions, and also by the private and civil society sector operators, i.e.  Non-governmental organizations, faith based organizations, cooperative societies and community-based organizations.


Characteristics of extension approaches and methods used include;

Demand driven and beneficiary led, clientele groups’ focused,

indigenous knowledge and technologies sharing, cost sharing with beneficiaries to reduce dependency syndrome, pluralism and networking,

use multidisciplinary teams and mainstreaming cross-cutting issues.

The clientele is involved from the planning phase. Clientele are reached through various extension approaches such as trainings, on farm demonstrations, field days, exchange visits/ tours and farm visits.

Monitoring and evaluation is usually carried out to get feedback and to assess impact. Women and youth form a majority of persons reached through agricultural interventions like crop farming, green houses, restocking, poultry farming and slaughter house offal businesses.



Main livestock breeds and facilities

Ninety-two percent (92%) of the County land is rangeland suitable for livestock production and supports 202,700 cattle; 622,000 sheep; 714,000 goats; 36,100 camels and 10,000 donkeys.

The main breeds of cattle

The local Zebu and the Borans and their cross-breeds while goat’s breeds include the Small East African and Galla.

Sheep breeds

Include the Dorpers and the Red Maasai while


Include the Somali, the Rendile and Turkana breeds.

During the last four years, the County Government through the ongoing livestock breeds improvement/upgrading programme availed 2,369 improved livestock breeds to farmers for upgrading the local breeds and these includes: 1,500 Breeding Galla Bucks; 252 Community Breeding Boran/Sahiwal Bulls; 332 Community Breeding Somali Camel Heifers and Bulls; 250 Alpine Dairy Does and Bucks; and 35 Dairy cow-heifers.

World Vision and other Stakeholders also provided breeding stock such as Galla bucks and Does, Rams and KARLO improved cockerels. The World Vision in collaboration with the Department of Livestock Production initiated the formation of Samburu County Breeding Association (SACOMBA).

The main livestock facilities and infrastructures

Constructed and operational in the county include 10 cattle crushes, 4 cattle dips, 18 livestock sale yards and 1 modern diagnostic veterinary laboratory which is 95% complete and awaiting full equipment. Four of the 18 livestock sale yards established namely Maralal, Poro, Lekuru and Suguta Marmar are modern and metallic in nature and were constructed with support from the Regional Pastoral Livelihoods Resilience Programme funded by the World Bank. There are also 5 major slaughter facilities located in the major trading centres. There is high potential of promoting livestock – products value addition in the sub-sector. The County Government in collaboration with European Union and State Department of Planning and Devolution is proposing to construct one (1) mini-modern abattoir for meat processing at Nomotio LIC. A mini-hides and skins tannery is also under-construction at Nomotio farm initiated by Melony Cooperative Society in collaboration with the Department of Agriculture, Livestock & Fisheries and KIRDI. There are also opportunities to exploit the dairy value chain in the county.


The main challenges facing the livestock sub-sector

Include prevalence of livestock disease outbreaks inadequate grazing resources frequent droughts insecurity and shortage of technical staff.

The sparseness of the County requires that at least one Animal Health officer is available to offer services in every village. To address the drought risk challenge, the department is going to mainstream disaster risk management and response plans into the sector-programming and work plans and monitoring and evaluation.

Ranching (number, ownerships and activities)

There are 40 registered group ranches with varying sizes across the County. The main activity carried out in these ranches is livestock grazing and wildlife conservation. Range reseeding with improved pasture grass species and the adoption of the Holistic Natural Resource Management Model are some the Ranch improvement practices and technologies proposed by County Government to improve grazing resources management in the group ranches. However, inter clan conflict in these ranches has led to delay of land adjudication process and has been a major challenge. It is only around Mararal Town, Poro area, and Kisima where the land adjudication has taken place and land title deeds issued. Amayia livestock holding ground will be exploited to produce clean animals free from trade sensitive diseases and therefore suitable for export markets.


Apiculture (bee keeping)

Beekeeping is one of the upcoming animal production systems that is being practiced in the county as an alternative production livelihood to livestock production. The famers keep bees mainly for crude honey production for use as food and source of household income. Other Bee-hive products that are equally important and can enter the food market include propolis, royal jelly and bee-collected pollen. The honey is also used in the cosmetic industry. Bees-wax is a main hive product that is used in the manufacture of candles. Farmers have organized themselves into beekeeping groups across the three sub-counties and they sell their crude honey to Samburu Bee Keeping Cooperative for processing.

The main bee keeping methods used include the traditional and modern with the promotion of Langstroths and KTBH bee hives.  The County Government in partnership with the SIDA and EU is promoting honey value chain in the county and all necessary institutions are in place. The County and various partners have supported the enterprise through provision of modern bee hives. During the 2016/17 financial year alone, the County Government supported various beekeeping groups with 420 modern Langstroths beehives and 15 honey harvesting kits. 


Aquaculture (fish farming)

Fish farming is an emerging livelihood production system that the County Government through the Directorate of Livestock Production is promoting. There is a lot of potential of fish farming within the county evidenced by the presence of permanent water reservoirs in areas of Lake Turkana, Kirisia, Baawa, Poro, Loosuk, Ngilai (Wamba) and Waso. It is an alternative livelihood with a ready market in all trading centres within the County. The main requirements are water for fish farming and fingerlings. Many farmers showed interest during sensitization and ten (10) fish farming groups have been registered at Baawa and Loosuk areas with a 30% composition of youth and women. The County has recruited two fisheries officers to support this initiative. Also, through support from County Government, 50,000 fingerlings were introduced into the above dams.




Irrigation infrastructure and scheme

Irrigation potential  

The County has high irrigation potential based on three (3) rivers of Ewaso-Rongai, Noigamet, and Sabwani, 65 dams, 2 water pans,(kobos and Twiga ), over 300 shallow wells, over 132 potential springs ,and over 150 boreholes out of which 34 were drilled , developed and rehabilitated by the County Government.

Irrigation schemes (small/ large scale)

Out of the 14 potential irrigation schemes across the County, only one (Koibei) is in operation covering 200 hectares and serving 450 households. The rest (13) are under planned rehabilitation which when completed will cover an average of 2,129 hectares and support food security and farm income initiatives to an average of 3,410 households. The most commonly used irrigation system are River-pump Fed and River-gravity Fed.

Small scale farmers also carry out bucket, furrow and river-pump fed irrigation farming for some crops such as tomatoes, vegetables, fruits including export crops like French beans and snow peas The major seed companies in the County such as Kenya Seed at Endebess Elgon Downs Farm as well as Western Seed Company and Agri Seed Company (SEEDCO) at Kiminini farms do sprinkle irrigation on their off season Seed Maize and horticultural crops.

Some of the above irrigated crops particularly tomatoes, vegetables and flowers are under greenhouse drip irrigation system. There are 18 County Government supported greenhouses; 72 individual farmer greenhouses and 540 commercial greenhouses under management of Mt. Elgon flowers and Panacol International mostly for export market. 

Crop, Livestock and Value Addition 

Crop production 

The County is endowed with natural conditions that favour growing of a variety of crops including food crops (maize, beans ,potatoes, millet, bananas and wheat), industrial crops (coffee, tea) and a variety of horticultural crops such as tomatoes, cabbages, kales, avocadoes, oranges, mangoes including export crops such as French beans, sugar snaps, snow peas chillies and cut flowers. 

Acreage under food and cash crops 

The area under food crops is 157,068 hectares;

horticultural crop is 2,590 hectares while area under industrial crops is 4173 hectares. However, 70 percent of horticultural crops are planted after the main food crops from the long rain season.

Maize and beans covering the largest hectarage at 107,000 hectares and 45,600 hectares respectively.

Other food crops grown in the county include irish potatoes, wheat, sorghum, finger millet and sweet potato.

The main horticultural crops grown in the county out of which tomatoes cover the largest hectarage of 630 ha. Other major horticultural crops grown include; cabbages, bananas, avocados, cut flowers and macadamia nuts among others.

The cash crops (industrial crops) grown in the county. These include coffee, Tea and sugarcane and the area under these crops are 2136 ha, 470 ha and 1567 ha respectively. 

Organic Farming

Organic farming is not prominently practised in the county and the majority of the farmers engaged in this are small scale farmers. There are over 43 groups of 258 farmers with average acreage of 41.2 hectares (103 acres) practicing organic farming in the County. Further, this farming is mainly promoted by Manor house agricultural training centre under bio intensive agriculture. The main types of crops under organic farming is are horticultural crops which are majorly vegetables. Snap pea 59, 207 Eggplant, 11220 Passion, fruits 46 578 French beans 30, 168 Sweet pepper, 11 43 Spring onions, 45 477 Chilli 2870

Average farm sizes

The average farm sizes ranges from 0.816 ha for small scale farming to 22.55 ha for large scale farming. 

Main storage facilities

The main farm storage facilities in the County are ordinary stores/cribs and in houses while go- downs and National Cereals and Produce Board silos are used for off farm storages. Some of the produce is also stored in the traditional farm stores (granaries). 

In order to reduce grain post-harvest losses and boost farmers‟ incomes, three grain storage warehouses have been constructed at Saboti, Kwanza, and Kiminini with a capacity of 5,000 bags (90kgs) in addition to the one in Cherang‟any Sub County constructed under the Economic Stimulus Programme with a capacity of 30,000 bags. 

Existing Facilities for Value Addition Value

Agricultural Extension, Training, Research and Information Services 

The County has no Agriculture training facility, research centre or information services centre despite there being a need for such facilities. Nevertheless, there is strong collaboration with existing National and international research institutions such as KALRO-Food Crops Research Centre and Coffee Research Institute both of which are in Kitale; Tea Research Institute based in Kericho among others. Research-Extension-Farmer linkages need to be strengthened within the County. Universities role within the County need to be co-opted to enhance their outreach capacity. 

Trans-Nzoia being an agro-based County, there is need for a central model farm that will serve as a centre of excellence to disseminate appropriate farming technologies and serve as an Agricultural Training Centre (ATC) for both staff and farmers. In addition, multiplication sites or nurseries for livestock and crops seedlings need to be established in all the sub counties and ward level for easy access and distribution to farmers. Agricultural Mechanization Station(AMS) needs to be equipped with more modern machines such as  Conservation Agriculture tools and equipment and other farm equipment that will assist promotion  of Smart Agricultural technologies geared towards increasing farm productivity for food security, Pasture and fodder production cognisant of the Climate Change and its effect on agricultural production.

Soils and Land Conditions for Agriculture

The soil analysis carried out in 2014 by Soil Cares Initiative and Crop Nutrition Companies (SCICNC), indicated that most soils in the County were acidic with low carbon content and required treatment to ensure maximum productivity. The soil acidity was attributed to overuse of acidifying fertilizer and poor soil management practices by farmers. This situation is exacerbated by the lack of affordable soil testing facilities to determine the PH levels of the soil. General remedial measures including liming have proved to be beyond the reach of many farmers. This therefore resulted to Athi River Mining (ARM) blending a fertilizer specifically for Trans Nzoia soils whose resultant impacts have been immense for those who have adopted its application.

The future success in agriculture depends on sustainable land management and agricultural production systems. Conservation Agriculture (CA) is the option for achieving this objective. Conservation Agriculture Technology operates under three fundamental principles of Minimum soil disturbance, permanent soil cover and crop rotation. With minimum soil disturbance, the technology enhances moisture retention and limits soil erosion which is key soil management strategies for increased productivity. 

Livestock Production

Dairy breeds include Friesian, Ayrshire, Guernsey, Jersey, Crosses and other indigenous breeds.

Poultry breeds include Layers, broilers and indigenous.

Sheep is reared for meat and wool while

Goats are reared for milk and meat.

The County also has hides and skins and leather improvement activities.


This is a recent practice in the County. Some of the privately owned ranches include; West- Wood Ranch with 81 Heads of Cattle (H/C) for beef in Endebess Sub-County and Crescent farm in Saboti Sub-County. The products meet the international accepted quality standards for export as they lie within the disease free zone.


Major bee hive types are Kenya Top bar Hive and Langstroth hives. As at 2017, the County had an approximated total of 10,700 bee hives out of which 6,000 and 4,700 are Top bar and Langstroth bee hives. Apiculture in the County is not well developed as the only processing plant is established in Waitaluk thus, there is need for modern hives, harvesting and processing equipment as well as a Honey Collection and Processing Centre.

The Blue Economy 

Blue Economy means the use of the sea and its resources for sustainable economic development. The Blue Economy covers both aquatic and marine spaces including oceans, seas, coasts, lakes, rivers, and underground water. It encompasses a range of productive sectors, including fisheries, aquaculture, tourism, transport, shipbuilding and repair, energy, bio prospecting, bunkering, sport fishing, port services, marine insurance, freight forwarding and underwater mining and related activities.

Fish Production

Trans Nzoia County has no water masses such as the lakes and oceans and thus fishing is practiced only in ponds and dams. Warm fresh water aquaculture is dominated by production of tilapia and African catfish (Clarius gariepinus) mainly under semi-intensive systems using earthen ponds. The common cap (Cyprinus carpio) and ornamental fish can also be produced under this system. 

The County has also potential for cold fresh water aquaculture involving the production of rainbow trout (Oncorynchus mykiss) under intensive systems using raceways and tanks within slopes of Mt. Elgon. There are 2000 fish ponds in the County and 8 fish dams. The areas of these fish dams and fish ponds are 1400m2 and 450m2 respectively. The main fish types cultured are tilapia catfish and trout while the main fishing gears used are aquaculture nets. The County is approximated to have 1800 fish farm families. 

The County has been a beneficiary of the Economic Stimulus programme which saw an increase in the number of fish ponds constructed. In addition the National Fish Farming Enterprise Productivity Program (FFEPP) a Vision 2030 flag ship programme is being implemented in the County. 1

Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries and Cooperative Development

Sector Overview 

The Sector is comprised of the departments of Agriculture, Livestock, Veterinary Service, Fisheries and Cooperative Development. The sector is also a key player towards the achievement of SDGs 1, 2, 3, 8 and 15 with regard to projects and programmes towards poverty reduction, zero hunger, good health and wealth, decent work and economic growth and life on land.

Sector Vision, Mission and Goal Vision:

Innovative, commercially oriented, competitive and modern agriculture, livestock and fisheries department.

Mission: To promote a competitive and sustainable agriculture, livestock, fisheries and a vibrant co-operative movement.

Sector Goal: Innovative, Commercially oriented and modern agriculture

Sector Development Needs, Priorities and Strategies 

Sector Development Needs and Priorities 

The sector development needs and priorities in the plan period include:

Increasing the capacity of County nurseries to meet increasing demands for bananas, avocado, coffee and tea;

Alleviate poverty levels especially among the small farm owners and squatters;

Promote training of both farmers and Agriculture Technical staff;

Improving supervision and management of Dairy co-operatives and other Sacco‟s;

Improving livestock breeds;

Provision of reliable response to increasing attacks from pests and diseases;

Promotion of climate smart agriculture;

Reduction of high post-harvest losses  

Promotion of value addition;

Promotion of crop diversification; 

Promotion of irrigation;

Livestock  disease management and  control; 

Promotion of modern fish farming and value addition.

Sector Strategies 

The sector strategies in the plan period include:

Establishment of County model/demonstration farms in each ward;

Promote the adoption of conservation agriculture techniques through modern conservation agriculture equipment;

Expand the capacity of the current nurseries to produce high-quality seedlings for coffee, tissue-culture banana, passion fruits, chili and avocado leading to crop diversification;

Enhancement of markets and marketing channels to ensure that ready markets are available for agricultural produce;

Promote value addition through strategic support for acquisition of milling plants for coffee and maize;

Expand the Artificial Insemination (AI) programme;

Increasing the number of milk coolers from the current 10;

Rehabilitation of the existing communal cattle dips and construction of new ones in every ward;

Provision of 150,000 chicks of breeding stocks of indigenous chicken and providing initial chicken feeds to small holder farmers;

Improving post-harvest management and support to farmers through subsidies on storage materials such as hematic bags and 

Organizing joint vaccination exercises with neighbouring counties in order to step up efforts towards disease control in the region.




Agriculture and Rural Development Sector

The sector comprised of three main sub-sectors mainly:

Agriculture, Livestock & Fisheries,

Lands, Housing & Physical Planning and

Trade, Industrialization, Cooperative & Enterprise Development, Tourism & Wildlife Management. 

During the implementation period the sector sought to increase agriculture production and productivity; improve livestock production, value addition and marketing; increase fish production in the county. Further the sector targeted to assure security of tenure and enhance sustainable land use in the county; provide reliable business information to investors and the business community; increase access by SMEs to affordable financial services; promote value addition in agricultural products; strengthen the cooperative movement; and promote trade, investment and tourism in the county.

Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries Sub Sector

Notable progress was recorded under this sub-sector. To increase agricultural production and productivity the agriculture sub-sector subsidized a total of 56,000 bags (10 kg) maize seed through co-operatives. Towards soil conservation and management, a soil testing laboratory was established at AMS and 2000 soil samples were tested against a targeted 1000 soil samples.

To improve on post-harvest management and reduce post-harvest losses, the county government constructed and launched a potato cold storage store in partnership with investors from Netherlands, constructed two (2) ware potato stores and one diffuse light stores, renovated two cereal stores at Kaptuli and Sosiani (2) and construction of two cereal stores at Mafuta co-operative society and Tuiyo co-operative society. Warehouse receipting system was also strengthened to increase storage access with five (5) warehouses utilising the system as per the end term target.

To promote good agricultural practices 60,000 farmers were trained against a set target of 23,000 in the plan period; 31 demonstrations were established on newly researched production technologies; extension services strengthened through recruitment of 45 extension officers against a targeted 30 and purchased 51 motorcycles for front line extension personnel. In addition the sub sector partnered with at least 55 private sector agencies for provision of extension services against a target of 50 during the implementation period. The sub sector also rolled out empowerment programmes to engage youth in promotion of high value crops, reduce youth un-employment and increase incomes. A total of 139 youth groups benefitted in Phase 1 of the Kijana na Acre programme.

To promote crop diversification the county purchased banana, macadamia, avocado and coffee seedlings and issued to farmers. In the plan period 2000 tissue culture banana, 3000 avocadoes, 1000 macadamia and 25,000 coffee seedlings were purchased.

In collaboration with national government, 500 resource poor farmers from Turbo sub-county were issued with planting fertilizer and top-dressing fertilizer under the National Agriculture Accelerated Input Access Programme (NAAIAP).

To increase productivity in the livestock sector, Artificial Insemination (A.I) services were subsidized; price of ordinary semen from a high of Ksh 1,500 to Ksh 500, and sexed semen from Ksh 6,000 to Ksh 1,500. Over 500,000 heads of cattle were vaccinated against livestock diseases, 382 cattle dips rehabilitated and 51 new constructed. A total of over 60,000 farmers have been trained on appropriate production systems while livestock breeding technologies have been promoted with 23 A.I units. 

To support value addition, one modern slaughter slab was constructed in Turbo and one ongoing in Burnt Forest against a targeted 5(five) in the plan period. To promote value addition in milk products the county has constructed a total of 46 milk cooler structures and partnered with national government for provision of milk coolers. A total of 3 milk coolers have been supplied to Keitich Kuinnet and Ndubeneti cooperative societies. A total of 9600 farmers were trained on value addition of various livestock products (processing, packaging, storage and distribution) against a set target of 1500 farmers in the plan period through the Small holder Dairy Commercialization Project (SDCP).

The county also purchased 3 feed mixers where 3 co-operative societies benefited i.e Ainabkoi co-operative society, Tuiyoluk co-operative society and Mois Bridge Muungano co-operative society. 

To empower women in the county financially and improve the nutritional needs of their families a total of 1,474 women groups were supported with 218,000 chicks through the Inua mama na Kuku programme.

To promote fish production the sub-sector trained 3500 farmers on fish farming techniques against a target of 1000 in the plan period. 8 education visits were conducted against a target of 20 education visits in the period. A fish farmer’s co-operative society was established to enable farmers market their fish more effectively and access fish farming inputs at cost effective prices. 

To boost dam fisheries, 3 major dams namely Kesses, Soy and Ziwa dams were stocked with 48,000 fingerlings against a target of 50,000 fingerlings in the plan period which is expected to generate over Ksh. 3,000,000 annually to the groups. This will be a source of income and livelihood to the communities living around the dams. 

In order to reduce the cost of fish feeds in the County the County Government allocated funds to procure fish feed ingredients to support a farmer group located at Mugundoi in Kesses Sub-County. To solve challenges related to fish marketing the County Government procured equipment for an aqua shop awaiting plot allocation against six targeted aqua shops in the plan period. This is expected to improve farmer’s access to market and other inputs through a one-stop shop.

In an effort to ensure reliable supply of fingerlings for fish farmers, the county government in collaboration with University of Eldoret put up a Fish Hatchery as per the target. The Hatchery is expected to produce enough fingerlings for the fish farmers within the County and beyond. The fish farmers within the County will also access quality fingerlings at a subsidized cost. In addition, to ensure availability of fish harvesting equipment, the department purchased 75 fishing nets to assist farmers in the County.

To enhance farmer training services, one multipurpose hall was constructed at Chebororwa agriculture training Centre and is 90 percent complete while 1 farm tractor, 1 maize planter,1 Rotavator ,seed drill and a potatoe planter and harvester were procured for Eldoret promote mechanized farming.

Agriculture and Rural Development Sector

The sector comprises the following sub-sectors; Agriculture, Livestock Development and Fisheries; Co-operative and Enterprise Development; ICT & E-Government, Trade & Industrialization; Lands, Housing, Physical` Planning and Urban Development.

The sector’s broad mandate is to increase crop production and productivity, improve animal health and productivity, value addition and marketing, and increase fish production in the county. Further the sector seeks to assure security of land tenure and enhance sustainable land use in the county; provide reliable business information to investors and the business community; promote trade and investment in the county; increase access by SMEs to adequate and affordable financial services; promote value addition in agricultural products; strengthen the cooperative movement; and provide adequate, efficient and reliable ICT infrastructure.


A prosperous county anchored on an innovative, commercially oriented and competitive in agriculture and rural-urban development.  


To enhance food security and improve livelihoods through commercial agriculture; create an enabling environment that promotes trade, industrial growth, cooperative and enterprise development, champion and advance the development of ICT and its use; and create an effective and functioning land management and administration system for sustainable development.

Sector Goal

To enhance food security, affordable housing, trade and cooperative development, industrialization and ICT innovation

Sector Development needs,

priorities and strategies The sector continues to face a myriad of development challenges ranging from; low productivity in crop and livestock farming; high cost of farm inputs; low value addition of agricultural produce; high prevalence of livestock diseases; mechanization farming; post- harvest management; access to AI services; inadequate market infrastructure; limited access to affordable credit; centralized licensing and land rates process; uncontrolled development; inadequate office accommodation; unavailability of public land; dormant cooperative societies; limited access to ICT services.




Irrigation Infrastructure and Schemes

Irrigation potential

The County has a huge irrigation potential covering the entire Kerio Valley and some sections of the escarpment and highland zones. Based on existing water resources, the potential area for irrigation is estimated at 40,000 hectares in the Kerio valley. However, this area can be increased to 100,000 hectares through investment in water storage and adoption of modern irrigation technologies. In the highlands, there is potential for supplementary irrigation which can cover over 30,000 hectares.

Irrigation Schemes

There are five irrigation schemes in the County with a capacity to irrigate 1,120 hectares. However, only two are operational currently irrigating about 680 hectares. Other irrigation development initiatives include farmer and community-based irrigation systems. These are mainly traditional furrows which irrigate about 3,000 hectares in the valley and 1,200 hectares in the escarpment and highland zones. Most of the irrigation projects are gravity-fed except for a few group/individual based projects that use portable pumping systems.

Crop, Livestock, Fish Production and Value Addition

Elgeyo Marakwet is agricultural-based with more than 80% of the households deriving their livelihood from the sector. About 25% of the population experience seasonal food insecurity caused by over-reliance on rain- fed agricultural production coupled with poor storage and distribution systems.

Main Crops Produced

The County produces both food and cash crops that vary with the agro-ecological zones. The major food crops include maize, beans, wheat, bananas, green grams, groundnuts, sorghum, millet and cowpeas. Horticultural and industrial crops which are mostly grown for sale include Irish potatoes, avocado, passion, mangoes, tea, coffee and pyrethrum.

Acreage under Food and Cash Crops

Total acreage under crop production by 2017 was 64,100 hectares with yields of about 1,288 tons. Of the 64,100 hectares, food crops accounted for 48,490 hectares while cash crops accounted for 15,610 hectares with the produce of 1,059 tons and 229 tons respectively.

Average Farm Sizes

Average farm size is determined by household farm size with the overall farm size averaging 2.08 hectares. There are two categories of farming in the county, i.e. small- scale and large-scale farmers. The small-scale farmers own an average of 1.36 ha while the large-scale farmers own 17.3 ha.

Main Storage Facilities

Granaries and traditional stores are the main storage facilities. NCPB has a sub-depot store at Kapsowar with other satellite stores in Kapcherop and Chepkorio used for aggregation of cereals and sale of subsidized fertilizer. Marakwet Highland CBO has constructed two modern stores for storage of cereals and potatoes at Koisungur in Lelan Ward. There are four other cold stores constructed by National Government Afirmative Action Fund (NGAAF). In total, there are about 14 stores spread across the county.

Agricultural Extension, Training, Research and Information Services

Extension services are provided by the County Government in collaboration with other state and non-state actors. These include Agriculture Sector Development Support Programme (ASDSP), Egerton University, International Crop Research in Semi- Tropics (ICRISAT), Kenya Agriculture and Livestock Research Organization (KALRO), International Centre for Insect Physiology and Ecology (ICIPE), Heifer International, International Potato Centre(CIP), Kenya Climate Smart Agriculture Project (KCSAP0, and East Africa Agriculture Productivity Project (EAPP) among others. The County has five training and demonstration farms where agricultural technologies are offered for adoption and upscaling. The farms also serve as multiplication sites. Three of these are public facilities (Chebara Agriculture Training Centre, Labot wool sheep and Chesongoch livestock multiplication centres). The other two are community- based (Kabonon/Kapkamak Irrigation Scheme) and privately owned (Cheptebo Rural Training Centre).

Research and Information Services

KALRO provides research services to the County through their specialized research Institutes. Kitale Institute focuses on cereal pasture crops. Marigat Institute focuses on dual-purpose livestock breeding. Research on tea is handled by Tea Research Institute while Coffee Research Institute handles coffee issues. ICRISAT and Egerton University are also engaged in on-farm trials for dryland crops, including sorghum, groundnuts, green grams and cowpeas in Kerio Valley.

Main Livestock Breeds and Facilities

The varied agro-ecological zones in the county influence livestock breeds reared by farmers. Cattle rearing (both dairy and beef) are the main livestock found in the County.

Main cattle breeds include ayrshire, friesian, dairy crosses, zebu and sahiwals.

Goat breeds in the county include Small East African goats, toggenburgs and alpine dairy goats.

Main sheep breeds are hair and wool sheep.

Poultry breeds are indigenous, broilers and layers.

Potential area for dairy farming is 94,123 hectares.

The average dairy farm size is about 1.7 hectares with average milk production per cow per day of 4 litres. Functional livestock facilities include 188 dips, 6 milk dispensers, 15 sale yards, 5 egg incubators, 15 slaughter slabs, 10 milk coolers and 1 milk processor.

Ranching The county does not have any ranches.

Apiculture (Bee Keeping)

The county has a high potential for beekeeping. There are about 53,000 indigenous log hives, 1,000 KTBHs and 950 langstroth hives. The average yield is 20kg, 10kg and 5 kg of raw honey per year per hive for langstroth, KTB and indigenous respectively.

Livestock Production, Fisheries and Cooperative Development Sub-Sector

The sub-sector consists of Livestock production, Fisheries, Veterinary and Cooperative Development units.

Sub-Sector Vision An innovative, commercially oriented sub-sector

Sub-Sector Mission To improve livelihood of county citizens through promotion of competitive and sustainable Livestock, Fisheries, Veterinary and Cooperative Development

Sub-Sector Goal To improve the livelihoods of Elgeyo Marakwet residents through promotion of sustainable Livestock sub-sector.




Irrigation Infrastructure and Schemes

Irrigation potential: The county has an irrigation potential of about 2500 Ha. Approximately, 250 Ha have been utilized (Metei scheme, Tindiret Ward) while the Chemase Ward scheme (by National irrigation Board) of about 1500 Ha. has stalled, making it hard to exploit its potential.

There is need for maximum exploitation of the existing Irrigation potential inorder to ensure food security and increased horticultural crops production e.g. French Beans, tomatoes, capsicums, mangoes, pawpaws, bananas, soya beans, green grams and Asian vegetables for economic sustainability of the county residents. 

Crop, Livestock, Fish Production and Value Addition

Main Crops

The main food crops produced in the region are maize, beans, Finger millet, Sorghum, Sweet potatoes and cassava which cover a total of 105, 087 Ha.

The main cash crops are tea, coffee and sugar cane. 

Acreage under Food and Cash crops.

The main food crops cover a total of 105, 087 Ha.

The main cash crops under smallholder production cover a total of 28,294 Ha  

Average Farm Sizes.

The average farm size is about 1.32Ha. This has been reducing over the years and is expected to reduce further due to land fragmentation occasioned by the rapid increase in population. Planners therefore have to put in place ways of checking this trend since it is likely to have an adverse effect on overall food production and land productivity. 

Main Storage Facilities.

There are four depots in the county owned by the National Cereals and Produce Board (NCPB) located at Kipkaren Seliant in Mosop, Mosoriot in Chesumei, Lessos in Nandi Hills and Meteitei in Tinderet. There is also storage facility at Kobujoi in Aldai Sub- County constructed by the Constituency Development Fund (CDF).

Agricultural Extension, Training, Research and Information Services.  

The County’s extension services are currently being provided to Ward level by 224 extension staff in-post. There are approximately 143,000 farming households requiring extension services. This gives a ratio of 1: 638 which is grossly inadequate compared to Extension staff to Farmer ratio of 1:400 as recommended by Food and Agricultural Organisations (FAO). There is need to attain the optimum establishment calculates of 358 extension staff to provide efficient extension services up to village level.  

Provision of Extension services requires decentralization of resources to be more efficient.  In order to bridge the gap in staff requirement, ICT technology will be deployed to provide e-extension services.  

Training of Farmers will be conducted by extension staff, subject matter specialists, and Kaimosi ATC through Common Interest groups and cooperatives.   

Research and Information Services

The county will work closely with Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organization (KALRO) on technology transfer. The county is served by the following KALRO Centers: KALRO- Kitale, Tigoni, and Institutes- Tea, Coffee, Sugarcane. The county will partner with Universities including Moi, UoE, UEAB, Egerton and Jomo Kenyatta, in the areas of training, research and mentorship in accordance with existing or future Memoranda of Understanding (MoUs).  The county will establish an integrated Extension data base/ Management Information System for information gathering and sharing with farmers and stakeholders. 

Main Livestock Breeds and Facilities.


Dairy and beef cattle are the main livestock bred in the county.

Other livestock types are poultry, goats, sheep, pigs and bees.

Livestock production and population projected from the KNBS 2009 Kenya Population and Housing Census and a Livestock Survey and   subsequently survey conducted by the County’s Livestock Production Directorate in 2011 was as follows: 

Dairy production is the main enterprise under this sub-sector. The county has 309,038 dairy cattle of which an average of 27% lactating. Total dairy production 121.5 million liters, valued approximately Kshs 3.6 billion per year. The average productivity is 4.5 liters per lactating cow per day. With adequate investment, the current level of dairy production can be doubled to an average of 9 liters per cow per day.

The key challenges contributing to low milk productivity includes

poor breeds,


livestock pests and diseases,

inadequate feeding,

rearing of non-productive herd (63% non-lactating), and

poor adoption of technologies in livestock husbandry. 


The county has a poultry population of 642,459, of which 93 percent is indigenous chicken, 5% commercial layers with the rest being geese and turkeys. Indigenous chicken is popular household income generation and nutrition (meat, eggs). The enterprise rakes in an estimated Ksh 37.8 million and 202.9 million annually from sale of birds and eggs, respectively.

The major challenges include:

poor husbandry,

high mortality of chicks, and

poor and disorganized marketing of birds and eggs.

One of the major interventions required to support the enterprise is procurement of incubators for farmers.


There are approximately 46,700 goats reared mainly for meat and for milk production. The Small East Africa (SEA) goats constitute 94 percent of the total goat population, while the rest are dairy breeds- German alpine and Toggenburgs. In 2017, farmers earned from 20,000 Kgs of chevron worth Ksh 8 million.

The challenge includes

the body size of the SEA goat and

poor husbandry.


Sheep population is 121,460 consisting cross breeds of exotic and indigenous types (typically the red Maasai sheep) reared for mutton. The annual mutton production is estimated at 500,000Kgs, worth Kes 182.4 million.

The enterprise is constrained by

poor breeds with small body size,

poor husbandry and diseases/ worm infestation. 


There are no ranches in the County since most of the population is predominantly engaged in cash crop, food crop and dairy farming. Coupled with this, the growing population against the inelastic land has led to land fragmentation in areas that would have been suitable for ranches.


Bee-keeping is a low input-high income enterprise in the county. There are about 23,740 hives, 56% are log hives, while the rest are improved hives – longstroth and Kenya Top Bar Hive (KTBH). Current productivity is 8Kg/hive/year and 15 Kg/hive per year, for log hives and longstroth/KTBH, respectively. This is half the potential in the county. The total honey production is 296,564 Kgs worth Ksh 35.6 million annually. The main challenges facing the enterprise include mismanagement of hives, lack of access to improved hives and markets for honey and its products.



The sector is charged with the responsibility of developing, implementing and coordinating policies, strategies, plans, programs and interventions in the agricultural sector and provision of agricultural extension services to improve adoption of Good Agricultural Practices.  


The sector is composed of five subsectors   namely: crop production, livestock production, veterinary services, fisheries and cooperative development. 


Vision: to be the leading agent toward achievement of food security for all, employment creation, income generation, poverty reduction and a competitive and vibrant cooperative sector in Nandi County. 

Mission: to improve the livelihoods of Nandi county residents by promotion of competitive farming as a business through appropriate policy environment, effective support services, sustainable natural resource base management and commercially and innovative cooperative movement. 


The goal of the sector is to increase food and nutrition security, commercialization of agriculture and effective and efficient marketing systems in the sector. 

The goal(s) will be achieved through increasing agricultural productivity and ensuring improved household food and nutrition security and also increasing commercialization of agriculture. 




Main crops produced

Horticultural crops in the County are: Fruits which include Banana, mango, avocado, oranges, lemons, passion fruits, pawpaw, water melons, guavas, tree tomato, custard apple, apples, plums, pears, and peaches; Nuts and Oils include macadamia nuts and ground nuts; Vegetables grown in the County include cabbage, kales, tomato, carrots, French beans, spinach, garden peas, snow pea, snap peas, potato, eggplant, bell pepper/sweet paper, pumpkin fruit, pumpkin leaves, butter nut, leaf amaranth, African nightshade, spider plant and cowpeas and Medicinal and Aromatic Plants (MAPs) including Bulb onion, Spring onion, Chilies and Aloe. The Cereal crops grown in the county are: Maize, Wheat, Rice, Sorghum, Finger millet, Pearl millet, Oats, Grain amaranth. Maize and beans are mainly grown in the highlands while sorghum and finger millet are grown in the lowlands. There is need to put incentives in agriculture like subsidized farm inputs to encourage more people into farming to reduces incidences of food shortage. Coffee is also grown in some parts Baringo north, Baringo central .Investors have shown interest in this crop and its production is expected to increase by double digits since the county for the last 3 years has been subsidizing coffee seedlings to farmers.

Average farm sizes

The average farm size is 2.5ha. Landholding in the county varies from one sub-county to another. Whereas landholding in the southern part of the county, that is, Koibatek Sub-County, averages 2.5ha and demarcated with title deeds, land is still communal and managed by the community in the northern part, that is, Tiaty Sub-County, Baringo North and Baringo south.

 Main storage facilities

A high percentage of agricultural produce is for subsistence purposes. The county is also served by the National Cereals and Produce Board, which has four depots in the county that are located in Eldama Ravine, Marigat, Kimalel and Kabarnet. There are only 7 coffee factories spread across coffee growing zones. The only functioning coffee cooperatives; one in Kituro and another in Kapkawa, Macadamia cooperative in Kabarnet and Maize cooperative in Marigat(seed maize production and rice production).There is an inactive Cotton cooperative.

Agricultural extension, training, research and information services

 Extension personnel have the task of bringing scientific knowledge to farm families in the farms and homes. The object of the task is to improve the efficiency of agriculture. County extension services or system assists farm people, through educational procedures, in improving farming methods and techniques, increasing production efficiency and income, bettering their standard of living and lifting social and educational standards. County Extension Services involves the conscious use of communication of information to help people form sound opinions and make good decisions. Agricultural Extension: Assistance to farmers helps them identify and analyze their production problems and become aware of the opportunities for improvement. It is also a professional communication intervention deployed by County institutions i.e. ATC to induce change in voluntary behaviors with a presumed public or collective utility. The essence of agricultural extension is to facilitate interplay and nurture synergies within a total information system involving agricultural research, agricultural education and a vast complex of information-providing businesses. Agricultural Training Collage at Eldama Ravine provides an opportunity in application of scientific research and new knowledge to agricultural practices through farmer education. The field of ‘extension’ now encompasses a wider range of communication and learning activities organized for rural people by educators in agriculture, agricultural marketing and value addition. Agricultural and machinery services agency based in Marigat provides new farming technologies to the farmers and provides subsidized equipment as part of farm input strategy in the sub sector. Veterinary sub sector has also invested heavily in extension services to improve the animal husbandry in the county and add value and income to the sector. Kenya Agricultural, Livestock Research Organization (KALRO) and Egerton University have set bases in the county to assist in research and development in agricultural sector in order to improve farmer incomes and develop resilience in the arid areas.


in Baringo County The group ranches in the Lake Baringo Basin were under adjudication and registration between 1968 and 1982 when the Kenya Livestock Development project phase I and II was functional. This project ended in 1982 when the Group Ranches were still under the process of adjudication and registration. Many of the group ranches that were proposed for adjudication and registration have yet to be fully registered. Those whose adjudication and registration have been completed have not had any ranch development carried out by the members nor have there been any donor to help finance the ranch developments. This situation has led to members of some of the group ranches demanding for subdivision of their ranches into individual holdings as indicated above. The group ranches neighboring urban centers are being encroached by the expanding towns


 Beekeeping (apiculture) is practiced in most parts of the County, particularly in the lowlands In addition to contributing directly to household incomes. Bees play an important role in plant pollination. The county produces an estimated 600 tones of honey annually valued at KES 120 million. Due to the low investment and variable costs involved, beekeeping is becoming increasingly popular in the county. In particular, the department of livestock production plans to increase productivity in honey among other commodities. The target is to revive existing honey refineries and construct more. Besides educating farmers on modern beekeeping methods, harvesting and processing techniques, there are plans to open up more collection centers and demonstration apiaries to be ran by the local communities Most of the farmers use the log hive and efforts have been intensified by the county government and stakeholders to gradually move the farmers to the use of appropriate (modern hives).



Livestock Production and Value Addition

Main Crops Produced

The main crops grown include maize, beans, wheat, potatoes and vegetables. Maize takes about 51 per cent of the total planted area. Crop farming is mainly undertaken in the southwestern parts of the county due to favourable weather conditions. Up scaling efforts are in place to promote other crops such as millet, sorghum, sunflower and black beans (dolichos). There is an emerging trend of increased horticulture and floriculture production both at large-scale and small-scale levels. This constitutes production of cut flowers, tomatoes, French beans, chilies and watermelons. There are efforts of up scaling fruit production such as avocado, orange, mango, bananas, pineapples and coffee. There are four small millings plants in Nanyuki and Nyahururu supporting value chain on maize and wheat.

Acreage under Food Crops and Cash Crops

The agriculture sector employs up to 60 per cent of the labour force in the county, holds significant value, and in this regard should get more funding. Expansion of acreage is constrained by high cost of farm inputs such as fertilizer, certified seed, weeding labour and Laikipia County Integrated Development Plan 2018-2022 Page 28 demand for mechanization. There are county and national programmes that are aimed at reducing the burden on farmers through provision of fertilizer, certified seed and occasionally pesticides for the control of Armyworms , Quelea birds ,Locust and MLND. The agricultural potential in the county is prospective as characterized by high potential farming lands particularly in the southwestern parts of the county. Over 20 per cent of the county’s total land is arable. The total area under crops is about 1,984 Km2 of which 80 per cent is under food crops. Total hectares under crops in 2017 were 79,285.

Average Farm Sizes

Majority of the farming households are small-scale holders whose average farmland size is two acres mainly for food production. The farm size for large-scale holder on average is 20 acres mainly for wheat and maize production.

Main Storage Facilities

Granaries are a common storage facility at household levels. The government through the National Cereals and Produce Board run stores at Doldol, Nyahururu and Nanyuki. At institutional levels, food stores are common particularly in schools on the school feeding programmes. At the household level, especially in the rural areas about 20% of harvested cereals are lost through pests.

Agricultural Extension Services

 Extension System Agricultural extension services are mainly under the public extension system where over 90% of extension services are offered by the county government and its agencies. A number of NGOs are also involved in extension service delivery in thematic areas of interest. Cooperative extension service model is exercised by a few farmer cooperatives especially in the dairy sector. Agro-chemical companies, horticultural marketing companies, flower buying companies, agro-stockists and private veterinary practitioners also offer private extension services. Extension approaches Value chain development approach has been employed by most of the service providers with variants to its basic concept. Commodity based approach, contract farming, farming systems approach, shifting focal area approach, enterprise development approach and farmers’ field school approaches are some of the preferred extension delivery vehicles. Extension methods Several methods are used including mass methods (radio, road shows, posters, field days, shows, trade fairs and newspaper adverts). Group methods (stakeholder forums, focus group discussions, farmers’ tours, CIGs, on farm trials and demonstrations, produce marketing organizations and group visits) are used. Individual methods (office visits, farm visits, telephone calls, letters, emails and social media use) are commonly employed. There are two Agricultural Mechanization stations in Nyahururu and Narumoru administered from Nyandarua and Nyeri Counties respectively. There is need for establishment of an Agriculture Training Centre (ATC) in the county.

Main Livestock Types and Facilities

 Livestock production is dominant in most parts of the county with the percentage of households owning livestock at 45.8. The main livestock types are cattle, goats, sheep, poultry, camels, donkeys, pigs and rabbits. The estimated livestock population is 55,000 dairy cattle, 211,200 beef cattle 344,200 sheep, 322,000 goats 372,000 poultry, 750 pigs, 9800 camels, 207,000 rabbits and 3867 beehives(457Log hives, 788 Top bar hives, 2622 Langtroth hives the average production per year is9630kgs translating to Ksh5,778,000). Livestock infrastructure comprises 50 holding grounds, stock routes, out spans, two public and two private slaughterhouses, 7 auction yards and 35 slaughter slabs. Milk processing is done at Nyahururu KCC and Countryside processing plant. There are seven milk-cooling plants run by dairy co-operative and individual groups.


Ranches in the County produce high quality beef stock, embryo transfer for Boran breed nationally and regionally. There are 32 private ranches, one government ranch and 9 group ranches. The ranchers and the neighborhood cluster-grazing committees have a functional model allowing vulnerable households to graze in the ranch during drought on agreed monthly fees.


Bee keeping is done as part of the enterprise by pastoralists and farmers practicing mixed farming. This is practiced in farm woodlots, perimeter fences and in forests. Most of the honey is produced using traditional log hives and only a few farmers use the modern hives like Langstroth and Kenya Top Bar Hive (KTBH). In harvesting, most use traditional gears (fire for smoking) which are destructive to the bees occasionally killing the queen. Towards value addition, there are 5 co-operative societies that are at basic levels of packaging honey and related by-products.

Aquaculture (Fish farming) and Blue Economy

 Fish farming is practiced mainly in Laikipia West and Laikipia East sub-counties. The predominant species is tilapia with a small aspect of clarias (catfish) culture. Production infrastructure comprises of approximately 900 fish pods with an average of 1,000 fish stock capacity. There are 125 water reservoirs viable for capture aquaculture. Rumuruti fish farm is a prospective aquaculture training, demonstration and fish seed bulking facility.



Main crops produced

The main crops produced include; maize, beans, Irish potatoes, sweet potatoes, vegetables, herbs, spices fruits and cut flowers. During the period 2014/15 the County produced the following; maize 2,168,656 (90 kg bags), beans 96,347 (90kgbags), Irish potatoes 255,196 MT, sweet potatoes 2,845 MT and horticultural crops in (MT) are 534,837 various vegetables which include tomatoes, carrots, onions, French beans, cabbages, kales, asparagus and leeks, herbs/spices, 8,961fruits and cut-flowers.

Acreage under food and cash crops

 The land area under food crops and cash crops in Nakuru County is 243,711.06(Ha) and 71,416.35(Ha) respectively. The main cash crops produced in the County are; Wheat 112400MT, Coffee 15900 MT, Tea 11495 MT, and Pyrethrum 260 MT. However, there is potential for pyrethrum production and the County has started the Pyrethrum revival programme.

Average farm sizes

The average farm size for small scale farms is 0.8 Ha whereas large scale farms is 25 ha (50 acres). If left unchecked the average farm sizes may reduce by end of the plan period due to continued sub-division of agricultural land for residential plots.

 Main storage facilities

The County has 1 silo and several cereal stores owned by the National Cereals and Produce Board spread across the County. There is one silo and 110 warehouses privately owned by traders/millers. There is still a shortage of storage facilities as the farmers suffer post-harvest losses. In the 2018- 2022 plan period, the County will invest in modern storage facilities to cushion farmers from the losses.

Agricultural extension, training, research and information services (available training institutions, demonstration farms’ multiplication sites etc.)

The County department of Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries spearheads agricultural extension services. Other research institutions that offer services to the farmers include; Egerton University, KALRO (Njoro, Molo, Naivasha), Pyrethrum Processing Company of Kenya (PPCK), Nakuru Farmers Training Centre, Agricultural Technology Development Centre (ATDC), Agricultural Machinery Nakuru County Integrated Development Plan 2018-2022 28 Services (AMS), Baraka Farmers Training Centre, Dairy Training Institute (DTI)Rift Valley Science and Technology (RVIST), KEPHIS, Kenya Seed, Pioneer, Monsanto, Syngenta. There are 3 agrochemical companies operating the County. Namely; Osho Kenya Limited, Bayer Crop Science and Syngenta.

 Main livestock breeds and facilities

 Livestock production is one of the major economic activities undertaken in the County. The main livestock reared include; dairy cattle, poultry, sheep, goats and rabbits. Dairy and meat production are the main income earners. Milk production has been boosted by the availability of major milk processing companies that purchase milk directly from the farmers’ co-operatives. The companies include Kenya Cooperative Creameries (KCC), Brookside among others. The County is boosting this sector by constructing the milk cooling plants for farmer groups across the County. Additionally, the County continues to improve the quality of meat products through construction of modern slaughter slabs, meat inspection, disease surveillance and control.

Ranching (Number, ownerships and activities)

There are 17 ranches in Nakuru County. Five are company ranches while 12 are private ranches. Most ranchers keep dairy and beef cattle, goat and sheep with milk, meat, hide and skin, wool and mutton as their main products. The ranches include: Soysambu, Marura, Major Boinet, Kedong, Sanctuary Farm, Marula, Morendat, Malewa Bay, Loldia, Korongo, Olsuswa, Wileli, Lapieve Ltd, Mboi-Kamiti, and Munyaka Farm.

Apiculture (Bee keeping)

In addition to contributing directly to household incomes, bees play an important role in plant pollination. Due to the low investment and variable costs involved, beekeeping is becoming increasingly popular in rural areas. Bee keeping is practiced in the County on small scale by individual farmers. Gilgil and Rongai sub-County has more farmers practising apiculture since these areas are relatively dry. Bee keeping in highland areas of Molo and Kuresoi remains relatively unexploited. Many farmers are however yet to fully embrace apiculture hence need to be sensitized on this kind of farming activity.



Main crops produced

The main crops grown in the county are wheat, barley, maize, beans, sugarcane and horticultural crops. The main horticultural crops include; tomatoes, potatoes, cabbage, French beans, onions and indigenous vegetables. Maize, wheat, barley, tea, coffee, pyrethrum and sugarcane are grown as cash crops. Maize and wheat are the highest income earning cash crops in the county. On average the county produces about 200,000MT of maize and 135,000 MT of wheat each year. However, production of these crops has been fluctuating as a result of erratic rains and emergence of the devastating diseases such as Maize Lethal Necrosis Disease (MLND). The area under maize also declined from 116,605 ha in 2012 to 110,079 ha in 2016.The total production fell from 462,981 tons, valued at 9.6 billion shillings, in 2013 to 271,158 tons, valued at 7.5 billion shillings, in 2015. Production of wheat declined in the last three years from 2.8 tons/ ha in 2014 to 1.9tons/ha in 2016. Production declined from 226,662 tons, valued at 6.9 billion shillings, in 2013 to 195,489 tons, valued at 5.6 billion shillings, in 2014, 135,776 tons valued at 4.1 billion shillings, in Figure 6: Wheat Harvesting in Mau area of Narok North Sub-county. Page 38 2015 and 132172 tons valued at 4.622 billion. The maize and wheat production has limited value addition which is limited to flour milling, cleaning and packaging for WFP. Other crops in the county which are increasingly being grown include sugarcane due to the construction of a new factory in Transmara West Sub County. Approximately, 200,000 hectares of land in high and medium potential areas is put under various crops annually. Others are beans, finger millets, pigeon peas, cowpeas and small scale production of cassava and sweet potatoes.

 Acreage under food and cash crops

 Acreage under food crop represents approximate 252,880 Hectares whilst cash crops occupy an area approximately 69,339 Hectares.

 Average farm sizes

The average farm size under small scale is 6.1 Hectares and that of large scale is 26.3 Hectares with barley, tea, sugarcane and wheat being grown as the major cash crops. There has been sub-division of land into uneconomic units in some parts of the county while some large scale farms remain unutilized.

Main storage facilities

The main storage facilities in the county stores owned are by National Cereals and Produce Board (NCPD). The total capacity of these facilities is approximately 640,000 bags. The major facilities includes Kiligoris NCPB stores with a capacity of 120,000 bags, Kirindon stores with a capacity of 160,000 bags, Narok stores with a capacity of 160,000 bags, Mulot, Engata Miguara and Enegetia NCPB stores with a capacity of 40,000 bags each, Enoosaen stores with 40,000 bags angata grain stores in Angata with a capacity 30,000 bags.

Agricultural extension, training, research and information services

The county agricultural sector extension service plays a key role in disseminating knowledge, technologies and agricultural information, and in linking farmers with other actors in the economy. Currently there are 128 technical staff and 47 support staff. The staff is distributed in the various sub counties. In the recent past there has been entry of private extension service providers in the county. The county has an operational Agricultural Mechanization Services station (AMS) and the Narok Pastoral Areas Training Centre (NPATC) institutions that provide specialized training to clients (farmers and extension personnel) and act as demonstration centers for improved technologies. The AMS has since been devolved while the NPATC is still under control of the national government. The Maasai Mara University is another training institution in the county that offers degree programs, diploma, certificate and short courses in agriculture, environment and enterprise management.

Main livestock breeds and facilities

Livestock production Livestock rearing is one of the main economic activities supporting the majority of rural household livelihoods in food security, employment and income generation. Livestock Page 40 species reared comprise of cattle, sheep and goats, poultry, bees, rabbits, donkeys and other emerging livestock. The population of major livestock species is approximately 1. 4 million Cattle, 1.2 million sheep and 0.8 million goats. Previously cattle comprised of indigenous zebus for meat, milk and other cultural purposes. However, owing to increase in human population and competition from other agricultural enterprises (mainly crop farming) local communities have opted to diversify into keeping high quality breeds. Thus Boran, Sahiwal, exotic dairy breeds and their crosses are progressively becoming popular. Dairy value chain is growing faster under intensive and semi-intensive production systems.

Main livestock breeds and facilities

Indigenous breed are the main livestock breed being reared in the county although. In the recent times, farmers are accepting to improve them using exotic breeds which are better performing in growth rates and production. In the highlands, there is high concentration of dairy cattle and merino sheep; while in the low lands there are the indigenous breeds of cattle and red Maasai sheep, among others. In highlands, the main breed is Friesian, Aryshire, and Guernsey for dailies, wool sheep and small East African goats. In the lowlands, the cattle breeds include Zebu and Boran, small East African goats, red Maasai and local and exotic birds. To improve livestock breeds there has been adoption of the A.I or improved bulls to upgrade local breeds. To enhance the initiative, farmers are organized into dairy and beef cooperatives and linked to affordable credit and insurance service providers.


The total number of fish farmers in the county stands at 467 currently and the figure is expected to increase with the continued interest in fish farming and appreciation of fish as a healthy alternative source of protein. There are approximately 425 fish ponds in the county, out of which 366 are in Transmara West and East sub-counties. The aquaculture production trend has been steadily increasing for the past five years growing from 8,078 Kg in 2011 through 9,722 kg in 2012, 12,642kg in 2013, and 21,336 kg in 2014 to 31,352 kg in Page 41 2015. A total of 2,345,000 and 7,000 tilapia and cat fish respectively were stocked in fish ponds. The total value of fish harvested was Kshs. 10,973,200.

Ranching (number, ownerships and activities)

The county has 156 ranches, which are all classified as group ranches (NCDP, 2013). However the number has been decreasing as a result of increased land demarcation and adjudication. There also a few large-scale commercial farms keeping dual-purpose and beef cattle, goat and sheep, with milk, meat, hide and skin, wool and mutton as the main products

Apiculture (bee keeping)

Promotion of bee keeping has successfully culminated in formalization through formation of Bee products marketing hub in Narok County with maximum capacity of 10 tones with current operating capacity of 3.5 tons per month during harvesting season. There is cooperative society (Maasai Mara bee keepers association) in collaboration with the Hive Limited- Christian Aid co –implementer to safeguard p 1.11. Crop, Livestock, Fish Production and Value addition



Main crops produced

The main food crops produced are maize, beans, Irish potatoes, tomatoes, capsicum, water melon, cow peas, vegetables and bananas. Kajiado South Sub County is the main producer of maize for both subsistence and commercial purposes. In Kajiado south sub county, the area under maize production is 25,950 Ha. annually, while the area under beans is 40,650 Ha annually. Tomato farming is also common in the county with 1,510 Ha across the county and Kajiado South leading with 940 Ha under cultivation. The county is in the process of completing a tomato processing factory in Namelok in Kajiado South with an aim of tomato chain and value addition.

Acreage under food and cash crops

The total acreage under food crops and cash crops is 52,775 Ha and 17,354 Ha respectively.

Average farm sizes

The average farm sizes for small scale is 0.5 Ha and 10 Ha for large scale farming.

Main storage facilities

Kajiado South have a main storage facility as National Cereal and Produce Board (NCPB) stores and receives a substantial harvest for maize crops although it’s mainly from subsistence farming. The farmers have home granaries and stores. Kajiado Central and Kajiado north also have their main storage facility as NCPB.

Agricultural extension, training, research and information services

Kajiado County has an agricultural extension service whose role is training farmers on how to improve livestock and crop production and productivity. There are 19 agricultural extension officers in Kajiado Central, 30 in Kajiado East, 18 in Kajiado West, 19 in Kajiado North and 27 in Kajiado South. These officers offer livestock production, veterinary, agriculture and fisheries extension services. Through the Government Subsidy programme, a total of 4,772 farmers have been registered in the whole county with Kajiado South leading with 3,317 registered farmers. There are 11 No. plant clinics across the county with a major representation in Kajiado South. There are two (2) training and breeding farms within the county; Agricultural Training Centre (ATC) in Ngong and Demonstration farm in Kajiado Central. The National Rabbit Breeding and Training Centre is also located at the Vet farm in Ngong.

Main livestock breeds and facilities

The county major cattle breeds are Sahiwal, zebu, borans and exotic. Kajiado demonstration farm provides Sahiwal breeding bulls to the pastoralists. The main sheep breeds are red Maasai and dorper. Goat breeds are galla, small east African and German alpine. Average annual milk production per year is 912,721 litres, beef production is 6639 tones, mutton production is 642, 750 kgs, chevon production is 536,505, poultry production is 345,600 and egg production is 1,440,000 trays.


There are 10 No. grazing communal ranches mostly in South and West Kajiado for grazing livestock mostly for beef production. The land tenure system in the county has greatly changed, from 56 group ranches across the county to only 10 grouped where private ownership 2018-2022 Kajiado County Integrated Development plan 33

Apiculture (Bee keeping)

The art of apiculture in Kajiado has a high potential owing to availability of natural flora that provides bee forage. However, there is low adoption rate owing to unavailability of apiculture training site. According to the County Statistical Abstract 2015, there are 14,096 assorted beehives across the county producing about 31,543Kg of honey annually.


The county practices both capture and culture types of fish farming. Main fish species are tilapia Nilotica and cat fish with an annual production of 16,000 and 14,000 metric tons respectively. The capture fish farming is practiced in the rivers, wetlands ecosystems, and in water reservoirs. There are 85 No. fish ponds occupying an area of 36,000 m2 across the county with Kajiado South leading with 45 ponds.



Main crops produced

The county is endowed with fertile soils and receives adequate rainfall throughout the year hence making it conducive for agricultural activities. The county produces both cash and food crops. The main crops grown include tea, coffee, sugarcane, potatoes, maize, beans, pineapples, horticulture (tomatoes, vegetables among others).

Acreage under Food Crops and Cash Crops

The total land under both food and cash crops is 75,932 ha consisting of 44,284 ha for food crops and 31,648 ha for cash crops.

Average Farm Sizes

The size of land holding varies across sub-counties. The average farm size for small scale farmers is 0.9 ha while for large scale farmers is 14 ha. The large-scale farms are dwindling due to land fragmentation resulting in more intensive land utilization through greenhouse farming.

Main Storage Facilities

The main storage facilities include maize cribs, metal bins, stores and warehouses. The county has three National Cereals and Produce Board (NCPB) depots. These depots are in Kedowa in Kipkelion East, Fort Ternan in Kipkelion West and Kericho town in Ainamoi Constituencies.

Main livestock breeds and facilities

Dairy production is the leading livestock enterprise in the county as well as poultry (mainly local chicken), hair sheep, wool sheep, meat goat rearing, beekeeping, pig production and rabbit rearing. There is a total of 288,021 heads of cattle consisting of 27,567 zebus and 260,454 dairy cattle. The dairy cattle consist of both pure breeds and also crossbreeds. The dominant dairy cattle bred are Friesian followed by the Ayrshire. The three main milk buyers in the county are Brookside, New KCC and Kabianga Dairies. A substantial amount of milk is also handled by Hawkers.


There is potential for ranching in the county in two sub Counties notably Kipkelion west and Soin/Sigowet.

Apiculture – bee keeping

The enterprise has been taken up for commercial purposes in some target areas; especially for honey. Use of modern technology has enhanced production. Other driving forces are the collaborative efforts of various players in the industry and the opportunity of bee-keeping to utilize other lands that would otherwise not be very productive in the other enterprises especially near the forest zones. Adoption of the recommended technologies has been slow due to high cost of the inputs (hives) and lack of start-up capital. Kipkelion West and Kipkelion East Sub- Counties has a higher potential of bee keeping in the county.



Main Crops Produced

The main crops produced are: tea, maize, beans, Irish potatoes, sorghum, finger millets, sweet potatoes, tomatoes, cabbages, kales, onions, avocadoes and coffee.  Bomet County Integrated Development Plan,

Acreage Under Food and Cash Crops

Average Farm Sizes

The average farm sizes in the county are 1.5 Hectares.

 Main Storage Facilities

The main storage facilities in the county include traditional stores, National Cereal and Produce Board (NCPB) depots and private stores.

Agricultural Extension, Training, Research and Information Services

Government extension services are available to the farmers at the sub-county level through to the ward level. The county government has Agricultural Training Centre (ATC) based in Bomet town that provides demonstration services to farmers.

Main Livestock Breeds and Facilities

The County has vast livestock breeds especially in cattle and goat dairy breeds such as Friesians, Ayrshire, Jersey, crosses, Toggenburg, Germany Alpine, Kenyan Alpine, Saanen among many. However, there are no ranches in the County .The notable facilities in the county include; plunge dips, milk coolers, liquid nitrogen plant, abattoirs, sales yards, bee hives, poultry incubators, fish hatchery, fish ponds, fish meal making machine. The following are the main livestock breeds in the county; The Main Livestock Breeds in the County Classification Type Dairy breeds Friesians, Ayrshire, and Jersey & crosses Beef breeds Crosses Dairy Goats Toggenburg, Germany Alpine, Kenyan Alpine, Saanen and Crosses Lamb Crosses Mutton Dopers and Crosses Chicken: Layers Broilers Rhode Island Red, Crosses and indigenous breeds Kuroilers, Kenbro and indigenous breeds.

Apiculture (Bee Keeping)

With the support of the County government, four groups have been established with 50 Langstroth bee hives and 2000 kg of honey is expected to be produced annually.



Crop, Livestock, Fish Production and Value addition

Agriculture is the backbone of the county as it accounts for over 65 percent of the total earnings. A large proportion of the county population is employed either directly or indirectly in this sector. This county is not food sufficient. This situation gives rise to the need to develop high yielding variety of food crops. High value cash crops are also necessary due to the high population density which has put immense pressure on land hence reduced acreage.

The co-operative movement that has been entrenched in almost every sector of the economy is expected to play a big role in mobilization of savings and provision of credit to farmers. The training institutions will be revamped to enhance farmer trainings.

The county will embrace multidisciplinary measures in order to increase the productivity of this sector. The efforts of the national, county government, the NGOs and other development partners will have to be increased in order for this sector to achieve set targets given its importance in the county. Use of modern farming technologies, subsidized farm inputs and mechanization are among the many strategies to be employed to improve the performance of the sector. There’s need to increase technology uptake by farmers through farmers training and recruitment of more extension to easy farmer staff ratio.

Main crops produced

The two main categories of crops grown in the county are food crops and industrial crops depending on the use of the harvested produce. A third category is horticulture crops (multipurpose).

Food crops-are cereals (maize, sorghum, finger millet, and rice), pulses (beans, peas and grams) or roots/tubers (cassava, s/potato, arrow roots). Most cereals have recorded increased production over the recent years as shown in the figure 3.1 below. But some pulses have declined due to some factors e.g. diseases. There’s need for research and adoption of crop varieties that are high value and disease resistant.

Main crops produced are: maize, beans, sweet potatoes, cassava, bananas, sorghum, finger millet, local vegetables, rice, tea, sugarcane and horticulture. Maize production is supported by farm input subsidy, agricultural mechanization programmes. Tea is being promoted in Khwisero; Ikolomani and Shinyalu sub-counties factory construction is underway. The county is promoting upland rice and also rice production under irrigation in Matungu, Mumias and Butere sub-counties.

The County has 239 greenhouses that are underutilized. Banana is the main horticulture crop enterprise and the county has 2,080Ha currently and is promoting establishment tissue culture bananas for commercialization. Women groups have also been trained on horticulture production

in local vegetables.

Acreage under food and cash crops

The total county land acreage is 305,130Ha of which 27,075Ha is under forest cover and 255,483 is under crops. Food crops covers 114,053.6ha while cash crops covers 141,429Ha. Thus 22,572Ha has been left out which need to be reclaimed and put under proper farm use. The main cash crop is sugarcane while the main food crop is maize.

Average farm sizes

The county consists of mostly small scale farmers. The southern part consist mostly small scale, medium scale towards central and northern and large scale is only performed northern part. There is need for more effort to promote production of high value crops like horticulture so as to

maximize outputs.

Small scale farming and Peasantry – most of the farmers in the sub county are small scale farmers i.e. farms are 1-5 acres. There are few peasants though i.e. farms less than 1 acre.

Medium scale farming – There are countable number of medium scale farms i.e. farms of 5-50 acres size.

Large scale farms are farm which are more than 50-100 acres. There are very few such farms in the county.

 Main storage facilities

The county has few storage and value addition facilities for example; maize storage NCPB stores in Kakamega, Butere, Malava and Lugari. Most of these stores are underutilized thus need for county facilitate purchase and storage of excess maize. There’s need of community level collection and storage facilities to enhance county food security. Need farmers’ capacity building on the use of the stores. There are small silos and traditional maize storage facilities in the northern part of the county. There is an incomplete milling and storage facility at Navakholo at Mautuma. Banana processing factory in place at Khwisero. Tea factory construction is underway. Rice milling plants installed and running Mwira (requires electricity), Koyonzo and Shikunga, Groundnuts: groundnut processing plant running in Khwisero sub-county and sugar cane factories at Mumias, West Kenya, Butali and sugar juggeries. Most of the plants are not milling or are under capacity.

Agriculture extension, training, research and information services

Agriculture extension services in the county are mainly provided by the public sector, i.e. county government, parastatals, and research and training institutions, and also by the private and civil society sector operators, i.e. companies, non-governmental organizations, faith based organizations, cooperative societies and community-based organizations. The characteristics of extension approaches and methods used include; demand driven and beneficiary led, clientele groups’ focused, indigenous knowledge and technologies sharing, cost sharing with beneficiaries to reduce dependency syndrome, pluralism and networking, use multidisciplinary teams and mainstreaming cross-cutting issues.

The clientele is involved from the planning phase. Clientele are reached through various extension approaches such as trainings, on farm demonstrations, field days, trade fairs/exhibitions, exchange visits/ tours and farm visits. Monitoring and evaluation is usually carried out to get feedback and to assess impact. Demonstration plots establishments at Bukura ATC and Kakamega Showground serves as a demonstration farm for the Sector where various farming technologies are show-cased during the Kakamega Agricultural Show. They include;

Bukura Agricultural Training Centre- supports farmers training and field demos.

Bukura Agricultural College- for students’ trainings.

KALRO Kakamega: Supports agricultural research for both crops and animals

KEPHIS: certifies agricultural inputs within the county.

ASK dissemination of information with the support of collaborators: seed companies, CBOs, development partners (e.g. GIZ), agro dealers.


Main livestock breeds and facilities

The county is endowed with good climate for livestock husbandry. The following livestock reared: cattle (dairy, zebu), poultry (indigenous chicken, layers, broilers, ducks, turkeys, geese and pigeons), bee keeping, pigs, goats (local goats, dairy goat), hair sheep and rabbits. According to (census 2009) Livestock population in the County is as follows Cattle – 377,910, Sheep – 88,790, Goats – 74,405, Pigs – 24,604, Donkeys – 691, Indigenous chicken – 959,746, Commercial chicken – 73,876. About 68% of the cattle are the zebus. The major dairy breeds in the county are Friesians, Aryshire Guernsey and Jersey. The commonest pets in the county are dogs and cats. These are of great concern as they are potential transmitters of some zoonotic diseases particularly rabies. Emerging livestock include; ostriches, quails, guinea fowls and ants. They are unexploited due to inadequate information on production and lack of sufficient marketing channels. There’s need to improve livestock breeds that are highly productive and resistant to diseases.

The county has a diagnostic laboratory at KALRO that requires rehabilitation. There is one Artificial insemination services Centre that acts as a distribution point for semen and liquid Nitrogen to the 50 AI providers in the County. There are 170 cattle dips with only 41 being operational, Mukumu Guernsey dip is private whereas the rest are communal, the County has 2 category ‘B’ slaughter houses in Mumias and Kakamega town and 68 category C ‘Slaughter slabs. These are either owned by the County or individuals. The average annual kill is about 32,536 cattle, 10,274 sheep, 4,500 goats, 2,200 pigs. Despite heavy consumption of poultry meat inspection is still very low and only about 27,000 chickens are inspected annually. The county has 20 livestock markets.

There are also Dairy Cattle multiplication farms/ demonstration farm –Bukura Smart Farm, Milk cooling plants distributed throughout the county, Honey refinery in Lurambi, Milk processing plant at Bukura Agricultural College, Milk cooling tanks distributed throughout the county and Hay storage: 5 stores each with a capacity of 2000 hay bales (Lugari- Rapred coop society, Munyuki coop society, headworkers self-help group, Mumias East- Shianda Dairy and Mulembe Dairy)


There is no ranching in the county. However a survey on ranching potential needs to be undertaken to establish how feasible this venture is in the County.

Main fishing activities and types of fish produced

Fish farming is one of the eight flag ship projects being implemented by the County Government of Kakamega. The Department of Fisheries is currently implementing the Kakamega County Fish Farming Programme which does pond construction and renovation and provides fish farm subsidies (fingerlings, feeds).

As at June 2017 the county had: 7845 fish farmers operating 8336 fish ponds covering an area of 2,536,300M2; fish production was 1,627,500 Kgs valued at Kshs. 450,000,000. The main culture species are Nile Tilapia and Catfish. The main production unit is the earthen fish ponds. The county has six private hatcheries which supply quality male tilapia fingerlings and also catfish fingerlings.

Apiculture (bee keeping)

Bee keeping in Kakamega is practiced in all the twelve sub-counties. It is more pronounced in the following sub-counties: Malava, Lurambi and Shinyalu. Productivity is low and the producers are poorly equipped. The enterprise has immense potential for growth.

There is need to build the capacity of producers and strengthen the marketing channels for honey and other bee products. This will help the producers realize the economic potential of the enterprise. Apiculture promotion will be key to unlocking climate change effects as it will ensure protection of forests. It is also a low income investing venture with high returns. This venture should be supported through purchase and distribution of Langstroth bee hives, farmer’s capacity building and market linkages



Main crops produced

The arable land is 404.8 Km2 representing 76% of County size. The major cash crops in the county include tea (1,530ha), coffee, bananas (998ha) and horticulture. The main food crops include maize (30,300ha), beans, cassava, sweet potatoes, vegetables, millet and sorghum. Majority of farmers plant at least two crops for food through intercropping.

The County Government intends to improve crop production by encouraging farmers to use certified seeds and fertilized, use of organic fertilizers and enhance extension services among other interventions.

Acreage under food crop and cash crops

The area under food and cash crop production in the County is approximately 40,000 ha and 8,000 ha respectively. The continuous planting of eucalyptus trees has not only reduced acreage under food crops but has had a deteriorating effect on the productivity of the land in the region. Efforts will be made to regulate the planting of eucalypts and farmers encouraged to plant other environmental friendly species of trees such as bamboo and indigenous trees.

Main storage facilities

The main storage facilities in the County are NCPB silos, improved granaries, traditional stores and bags. The silos are located in Chavakali and Hamisi market centers. However, they operate below capacity due to low crop production.

Main livestock bred

The main breeds of livestock kept in the County include; Zebu Cattle 133,720, Dairy Cattle, Poultry 796,390, Sheep, Goats, Pigs and Rabbits. The annual milk production 28,500,000 litres. Indigenous Chicken is the main poultry reared with annual egg 8 productions of 15,574,550. Guinea fowls rearing and apiculture are emerging enterprises in the County. The annual Honey production is 69,000 litres.

Main fishing activities

The county has 2,819 farmers engaged in pond-based aquaculture activities, most of whom practice semi-intensive farming. These fish ponds cover a total area of 84.57 ha with the main fish species cultured being tilapia and catfish. The County also has one private fish hatchery in Hamisi Sub-County and one private cottage fish feed producer based in Luanda.



Main crops produced

Main crops produced include maize, beans, finger millet, sweet potatoes, bananas, sorghum, Irish

Potatoes and assorted vegetables. Sugar cane, cotton, palm oil, coffee, tea, sun flower and tobacco are grown as cash crops in the County.


Acreage under food and cash crops

The area under food crops is 201,654.6 ha, while that under cash crops is 86,423.4 ha. Nzoia Sugar Company has about 50,000 hectares of land under sugar cane. Most of the agricultural activities are rain-fed, meaning that farmers only Plant during the rainy seasons. It is therefore important for efforts to be directed towards diversification from agriculture to other economic activities, while also embracing irrigation and green house farming technologies so as to boost food productivity.

Average farm sizes

The average farm size in Bungoma County is 2.5 acres. However variations do exist in the food

basket areas of Mt. Elgon and Tongaren ranging from 10-50 acres.

Main storage facilities

The County has three (4) National Cereals and Produce Board (NCPB) warehouses (Bungoma, Webuye, Kapsokwony and Bumula) which are underutilized. Traditional granaries and grips are also used by communities in rural areas. Most of the households also use sacks and baskets to store grains. Most grain is stored without proper drying and chemical treatment. This leads to massive losses due to grain damage from high moisture content or weevils attack. There is need to subsidize drying and storage charges to increase demand for use of NCPB stores.

 Main livestock breeds, products and facilities


Animal husbandry is an integrated part of land use. Traditionally, wetlands and rangelands were

used for grazing. The emphasis on crop production has reduced grazing land, hence reduction of

animal stock. Main livestock in the County include; cattle, sheep, goats, donkeys, pigs, rabbits,

poultry and bees. The average land carrying capacity is 3 livestock units per acre (LUs/acre).

Indigenous chicken and cattle are the most common livestock, though their productivity is low.

Hence, there is need to introduce superior, fast growing and disease resistant varieties to increase

productivity and family incomes. In order for the County to establish a viable dairy sector, there is need to formulate comprehensive legislative framework to promote the establishment of dairy development corporations. These corporations will provide ready market to dairy farmers as well as facilitate value addition. The County needs to establish economic dairy farm units in selected County youth polytechnics and Mabanga ATC. Additional dairy farm units could be established at Sang’alo Institute of Science and Technology, Kisiwa TTI, Matili TTI and Musakasa TTI in conjunction with the National Government. These economic dairy farm units will serve as the nucleus of the dairy corporation milk processing plant.


The County does not have any ranches because 80% of the land is arable and therefore suitable for crops and mixed farming for both household consumption and for sale.

Fishing activities

The main types of fish produced through the County aquaculture programmes are tilapia, cat fish

and mud fish. Apart from fish farming, communities residing close to dams and main rivers engage in fishing activities on subsistence basis. There is need to promote aqua-culture by training, establishing fish feed plants, rehabilitating and stocking existing dams and fish farms. In addition there is need to promote utilization of modern fish farming technologies ranging from production to storage, processing and marketing.

Apiculture (Bee keeping)

Bee keeping is one of the agricultural activities in Bungoma County though on a small scale in

sub-counties such as Mt. Elgon, Sirisia and Bumula. Apart from being a low cost initiative, apiculture is one of the answers to diversifying and modernizing agriculture. The County can promote apiculture by establishing model bee farms to serve as training and learning centers.



 Main crops produced

Busia County’s climate is conducive for agriculture. Some of the crops that are grown within the county in small scale include maize, beans, sweat potatoes, millet, cassava, tobacco, cotton and sugarcane.

Acreage under food and cash crops

The broad agricultural production systems in the county include crop cultivation, livestock rearing and fisheries. Agriculture is the most important sector in the County as it provides for over 65% of the total earnings. Most people in the County are employed either directly or indirectly in this sector. Part of the available farmland is taken up by sugarcane farming as a cash crop. The total farming acreage is 155,990 acres of food crops while 29,525 acres is under cash crops.

Average farm sizes

The average farm size in the county is 1.71 acres.

 Main storage facilities

The main food storage facilities used by farmers include gunny bags, wooden granaries and keeping the farm produce in houses. In addition, there are a few modern stores such as silos owned by the National Cereals and Produce Board (NCPB) located in Malaba Town.

Agricultural extension, training, research and information services

The County has an organized extension system and structure. The lowest extension unit is the ward, which is manned by a ward extension officer. At the county level, the extension services are headed by various directors. At the Sub – County level, the extension services are headed by various agricultural and livestock extension heads. The ward extension officers have been given motorcycles to enable them reach a large number of farmers. They too are regularly provided with the requisite extension materials for quality extension service delivery.

The County has two farmer training institutions namely; Busia Agricultural Training Centre and Wakhungu Fisheries Training Centre. These institutions have the mandate of training farmers on various agricultural technologies. They also carry out farmer outreach extension activities and farm demonstrations. Farmers’ field days and demonstrations are held in all the 35 wards to train farmers on the various aspects of modern farming.

In research and farmer outreach programmes, KALRO has equipped the Alupe Agricultural Research Centre to be able to carry out research on regional agricultural issues.

Main livestock breeds and facilities

There are different types of livestock in Busia County. These include zebu cattle, dairy cattle, pigs, indigenous poultry, indigenous goats, sheep and rabbits.

The livestock sector infrastructure and facilities are not of acceptable standards. Going forward, the county intends to renovate all the existing facilities and build modern facilities

reservation and construction of cattle dips, construction of new crush pens, construction of slaughter houses and upgrading of existing ones.

Main fishing activities

Lake Victoria is the main source of fish in the county. This is, however, facing challenges in terms of fish processing and storage.

The County Government introduced cage fishing culture in Busia meant at restoring the lake and promoting fish trade enterprise across the county. There are 5,000 lake shore families who directly rely on fish and 3,000 who trade in lake resource. The ex0vessel value of fish along the county beaches earn the fishermen Kshs 700 million annually. The fish traded across the markets in Busia are valued at approximately Kshs 1.2 billion annually.


Busia County has a high potential of bee keeping going by the ideal climatic conditions prevalent in the area. The large tracts of bushy land in Teso North, Teso South, Samia and Bunyala Sub – Counties provide for ideal conditions for bee keeping.

Bee keeping is one of the programmes implemented by the Directorate of Livestock Production. The LVEMP II programme, KAPAP and WKCDD/FMP have been key in promoting bee keeping in collaboration with the department.



Main Crops Produced

Crop production is a major contributor to food self-sufficiency and security in the county. In addition, it contributes to poverty reduction through employment creation and value addition. The main food crops are maize, sorghum, beans, cassava and sweet potatoes. These are produced across all the six sub-counties, albeit with different intensities. Cash crops produced are mainly rice, sugarcane and groundnuts. Over the years cotton production has declined because of marketing problems. Vegetables produced in the County include; tomatoes, onions, avocado and kales while fruits are mangoes, pawpaw, bananas, oranges and watermelon. Some of the emerging crops in the County include: irrigated rice, palm oil, chili, passion fruits and grain amaranth.

Acreage under Food and Cash Crops

The area under major food crops had a tremendous increase in 2014 compared to 2013. This was partly attributed to the introduction of Tractor Hire Service (THs) that accelerated the opening of more land for crop production. This was also contributed to by the subsidized seeds and fertilizers, favourable weather conditions and facilitation of agriculture extension staff. However in the subsequent years, there was both a drop in acreage under crop production and productivity. This was majorly caused by inadequate moisture resulting in some of the ploughed land remaining unattended to. In Agro Ecological Zones (AEZ) LM3 and LM5, most crops suffered water stress leading to depressed production. Pest and disease infestation such as out- break of fall armyworm in 2016also exacerbated the situation. In 2016, 67,009 MT of cereal crops valued at Kshs 1,879,277,000 was produced from 89,273 Ha, 23,346MT of legume crops valued at Kshs 1,157,671,600was produced from 45,490 Ha. For roots and tuber crops , the production was 96,505 MT valued at Kshs 1,126,745,980 from 7630 Ha while a total of 29,400 MT of fruit crops was harvested valued at Kshs 85,790,300 from 1075 Ha. Since most of the vegetable production is under irrigation, the effect on weather was not significant. A total of 36,682.3 MT valued at Kshs 1,346,538,750 was produced from 3732 Ha during the same period. (Directorate of Agriculture, 2016).

Average Farm Size

The average farm size for a small scale farmer is 1.1 hectares for a large scale farmer. The farm size is 0.8 ha for Gem and Ugunja; 1 ha for Alego Usonga, Bondo and Rarieda and 2 ha for Ugenya. Due to small farm holdings and the resulting limited benefits of economies of scale, the practice of mechanized agriculture is heavily constrained.

Main Storage Facilities

The main storage facilities in the County both on and off farm include; traditional cribs, modern stores, traders‘ stores at the market centers and the National Cereals and Produce Board (NCPB) stores in Bondo town and Yala in Gem. In addition to the major cereal stores, the county hosts: Awelo grain/fertilizer store (NG-CDF), Kenya Industrial Estate Stores, Township Groundnut Store (World Vision), Boro DOs grain/fertilizer store (NG-CDF), factory store (dominion farm) in Alego Usonga; Yala Market Service Centre  and CGS), Nyawara Animal Feed Store (WKCDD and FMP) in Gem; Sega feed store (jera feeds), Anyiko Rice Store (MOA), Ukwala Grain Store (CGS) in Ugenya. The County Government and NG-CDF have constructed additional cereal stores in Ugunja, Gem and Alego Usonga sub counties. These facilities are inadequate and are not well equipped to prevent high post-harvest losses.

Main Livestock Breeds and Facilities


Livestock production in Siaya includes rearing of beef and dairy cattle, poultry, sheep, goats and pigs. Other animals like donkeys, rabbits, bees and emerging livestock (e.g. quails, ostriches, crocodiles, silk worms) are also raised. It also entails forage production. Almost all household in the rural areas keep livestock. Some households in urban centers also keep livestock. Animal husbandry practices are almost uniform across the county with most livestock species raised on extensive farming systems. A few farmers have shifted to intensive animal farming methods, which have increased the yield of the various livestock products. Livestock production continues to play a major economic and socio-cultural role within the county. It provides a source of food, income, employment, power, organic manure, and a means of transportation. It is a significant user of products from feeds, drugs, vaccines and equipment manufacturing industries and is a major provider of raw materials for agro-processing industries. With the increasing population, incomes and urbanization, the demand for livestock and livestock products is on the increase. Livestock facilities in the county include cattle dips, auction rings, agro vet outlets, crush pens, water sources, and abattoirs,

Dairy Cattle: Dairy cattle population is estimated at 6071 heads: 515 in Ugenya; 1270 in Ugunja; 1490 in Alego Usonga; 876 in Bondo; 268 in Rarieda and 1652 in Gem. They are mainly kept in medium- to high-rainfall areas of Gem, Alego Usonga, Ugunja and Ugenya. The key dairy breeds are Ayrshire, Friesian, Guernsey, Jersey and cross-breeds. The bulk of the milk is produced by the zebu cattle, which has an estimated population of 339913 heads. In 2016, milk production was estimated at 25 million litres valued at Kshs 375 million. The rising population in the county puts pressure on milk production as demand outstrips supply leading to heavy reliance on milk from other counties.

Beef Cattle: The beef cattle population is estimated at 340,000 heads: 18811 in Ugenya; 34678 in Ugunja; 99198 in Alego Usonga; 87478 in Bondo; 55540 in Rarieda and 44208 in Gem. The main beef species are East African Zebu and cross-breeds. The average carcass weight is 80 kg which is way below the national average of 120 Kg. Dairy cattle culls also contribute to the county beef supply. On average, the county produces 3800 MT of beef worth Kshs 1.3 billion annually. The supply of beef barely meets the county‘s demand.

 Sheep and Goats: Sheep and goats play a key role in culture and households ‘income and food security. They have short-generation intervals, high adaptability and versatile feeding habits. The main goat breeds are the Small East African Goat and sheep breeds are the indigenous hair sheep whose sizes are small and take a long time to mature. The county has an estimated 270,000 goats and 150,000 sheep. Annual meat production is estimated at 540 MT of mutton and 250 MT of chevon worth Kshs 294 million.

 Poultry: The County has an estimated 1 million birds, consisting of free-ranging birds, commercial layers and broilers. Other poultry species like duck, turkey, pigeon, ostrich, guinea fowl and quail make up 3 per cent and are becoming increasingly important. Annually, the county produces about 1900 MT of poultry meat worth Kshs 760 million and 716,000 trays of eggs worth KES 214 million. The county has a deficit of both poultry meat and eggs which are supplemented by imports

Pigs: Pig rearing in the county is not well-established or organized, starting from the rearing to the marketing. Pigs are a source of household income and food security. Most are kept on extensive system, where they are left to scavenge. Breeds include crosses of Landrace, Large White, Hampshire and locals. In 2016 the county has an average population of 13,000 pigs: 4131 in Ugenya; 1555 in Ugunja; 787 in Alego Usonga; 4419 in Bondo; 1589 in Rarieda and 745 in gem. The pig meat production is estimated at 204 MT worth Kshs 48 million.

 Livestock Health: The veterinary services involve livestock disease and pest control, veterinary public health, hide and skins improvement services and extension services and regulatory services in artificial insemination, agro vets, clinical services and animal care. Trans- boundary diseases is a major threat as most of the diseases enter the county from other counties. Major diseases encountered are tick born and east coast fever (ECF) which is the major animal killer. Other diseases include rabies, foot and mouth, trypanosomiasis, lumpy skin disease, new castle disease, fowl-pox and fowl typhoid. To mitigate animal diseases, the county has a full-fledged veterinary directorate which works hand in hand with private animal health practitioners. There are also agro vets which provide over the counter drugs to farmers. There is one functioning cattle dip in Alego Usonga and 59 non functioning dips across the county. There are 13 functioning crush pens: 5 in gem; 1 in Rarieda and 7 in Bondo and 83 non functioning crush pens: 10 in both Alego Usonga and gem; 24 in Rarieda ; 22 in band and 17in Ugunja.

Fishing Activities

Fisheries activities are major sources of income, food, employment and foreign exchange earnings in Kenya. Lake Victoria is the most important source of fish in East Africa and the biggest source of freshwater fish on the African continent. The lake is also important in conservation terms because of its great biodiversity of predominant fish species. Fisheries in the County are two folds; capture fisheries from Lakes Victoria and Kanyaboli, and culture fisheries (aquaculture). The Siaya Waters of Lake Victoria directly employs 12,140 fishing crews operating 4,007 boats accounting for about 30% of the number of crews and 28% of fishing boats operating on the Kenyan side of the lake (Frame Survey, 2016). The fishing crews and crafts operating in Lake Kanyaboli stands at 834 and 398 respectively. In total, there are 83 fish landing sites on Lake Victoria and 4 on Lake Kanyaboli with the major ones being Usenge, Wichlum, Luanda Kotieno, Osindo and Nambo on Lake Victoria. In 2016, the county produced about 28.3 thousand metric tons of fish from Lakes Victoria and Kanyaboli valued at about 5.6 billion Kenya shillings based on ex-vessel prices. The catch was dominated by Rastrineobolaargentea (‗Omena‘– 38%) and Nile perch (36%) with Tilapia and catfish contributing 6% and 2% of the total fish landings by volume respectively. Other species were also landed though in relatively smaller quantities. Fish catches from lakes have shown a general downward trend, from 39 thousand metric tons in 2010 to about 28.3 thousand metric tons in the year 2016. This calls for more effort on ensuring sustainable utilization of the fisheries resources in our lakes. Over 80 per cent of „Omena‟ and Nile perch fishes landed in the county is traded outside the county with Nile perch being the country’s major fish export earner. Fish farming in the County is largely practiced in earthen ponds although fish cages have also picked up n Bondo and Rarieda sub counties. The highest number of fish ponds in Gem (24%) is largely because of the existing streams and soil type that favor fish farming on earthen ponds. Only two species so far dominate this region, namely Tilapia (Oreochromisniloticus) and African catfish (Clariusgariepinus). In the year 2016, the county produced 137.3 metric tons from earthen ponds which netted the farmers Kshs 24.1 million. More potential remains un-tapped both in the lakes Victoria and Kanyaboli as well as in earthen ponds with regards to productivity.


In addition to contributing directly to household incomes, bees play an important role in plant pollination. In 2016 the county had 10,600 beehives producing 513 MT of honey and 13 MT of beeswax, all valued at Kshs 183 million. Beekeeping is becoming increasingly popular due to the low investment and variable costs involved. The potential for apiculture is huge and underexploited.



Acreage under food and cash crops

The County’s performance in this sector has been dismal despite its suitable ecological and climatic conditions for the production of cotton, sugarcane, rice and horticulture. The County’s total area under food crop (maize, beans, rice, sorghum, green grams, sweet potatoes, cassava, tomatoes, cowpeas, kales and groundnuts) is estimated at 107,335 Ha with 3,443 Ha under horticulture during the long rains and 5,985 Ha under rice production. Area under cash crops is approximately 45,309 Ha with sugarcane covering the largest area at 44,988 Ha. Sugarcane growing is majorly done in Muhoroni Sub-County covering approximately 43,700 Ha and employing 14,585 farmers directly.

Main storage facilities

Farmers in the County mainly utilize two types of storage: on farm and off farm storage. Most farmers store their produce in gunny bags inside their houses. Off-farm storage is mainly through the National Cereals and Produce Board Silos in Kisumu and Muhoroni Sub- counties. The Lake Basin Development Authority and The National Irrigation Board offers storage facility for rice produced.

 Livestock and Veterinary Services

Main livestock breed in the County include dairy cattle, beef cattle, pigs, goats, sheep, poultry, rabbits and bee keeping. A large number of dairy animals are found in the higher and cooler parts of the County, which are mainly found in Kisumu West, Muhoroni and Nyakach Sub-Counties. The most common dairy cattle breeds found in the County include Ayrshire, Friesian, Guernsey and their crosses. The County also has large number of indigenous cattle breeds with low productivity mostly occasioned by in-breeding and poor husbandry. Breeding services are costly to the average farmer who resorts to use of communal bulls for breeding as opposed to use of artificial insemination using superior bull semen. Leather development activities in the County are hampered by lack of skilled players, inadequate number of flaying knives, poor curing and storage facilities. This affects quality and prices of leather In the County, red meat is sourced from cattle, goats and sheep with the populous Zebu breed being the primary source of beef in the County. The small East African meat goat, chevon, breed dominates the County while sheep rearing, a source of mutton, is very popular in the local community. Most sheep are predominantly cross breed between the red Maasai, Black head Persian (Somali) and the Dorper sheep breeds.

Chicken production, which is one of the most important economic activities for small scale farmers in the County, is either reared in subsistence or commercial systems of production for white meat and eggs.

Despite production potential with varied animal species in the County, livestock sector is riddled with low productivity due to animal diseases, farmers keeping animals of poor genetic material, poor (traditional) farming methods and changing climate, among other factors. Animal diseases affect the productivity and welfare of affected animals in the county. Among the diseases that cause losses to farmers include Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD), East Coast Fever (ECF), Black Quarter and Mastitis. Zoonotic diseases like Rabies kill animals and require expensive management whenever human beings are affected. Food-borne infections like helminthiasis cause economic losses to humans in form of lost man-hours, treatment and condemnation of affected organs during meat inspection.

 Agricultural extension, training, research and information services

The County hosts Maseno Agricultural Training Center which serves as training centre for farmers and those interested in farming enterprises. The Training Centre has a multiplication |centre, agro-processing unit and Demonstration plots for various Agricultural enterprises. Kenya Agriculture and Livestock Research Organization (KALRO) also has Demonstration plots for various Agricultural and Livestock produce.

 Apiculture (bee keeping)

Apart from livestock, the County is rich in wild bee colonies which provide immense potential for bee keeping and honey production.



 Crop, Livestock, Fish Production and Value addition

This section gives the main crops produced in the County, acreage under food and cash crop, main storage facility, livestock breeds and number of ranches available in the County.

Main Crops Produced

The main food crops produced in the county are maize, beans, green grams, sorghum, finger millet, kales, cassava, sweet potatoes and cow peas. The vast majority (80%) of the farmers produce maize and beans. This is because maize and beans are considered the staple food of the county. Cassava and sweet potatoes are the main county’s insurance crops due to their resilience to adverse weather conditions. The main cash crops produced in the county are Sugar cane (Ndhiwa), Sunflower (Suba), Pineapples (Rangwe) and potatoes (Karachuonyo South and Karachuonyo East) and groundnuts (Homa Bay town, Rangwe, Ndhiwa, Karachuonyo South and North). There exists huge potential for cotton in Suba North, Homa Bay town, Rangwe, Ndhiwa and Karachuonyo North Sub-Counties. Coffee and tea are also marginally produced in the upper zones in the county.

Acreage under Food and Cash Crops

Whereas 207,685 hectares are under food crop in the county, only a paltry 21,211 hectares is under cash crops with about 7,872 hectares being under horticulture. The main challenge for the County 26 government will be to increase yield per acre for crops especially those considered staple foods and high value cash crops in the county.

Average Farm Sizes

The average farm size for small scale farmers is four acres while that of large scale farmers is 10 acres. The large-scale farmers are found mainly in less densely populated areas of Ndhiwa, Suba and Mbita sub-counties where large stocks of livestock are kept. The main crops grown in large scale farms are maize, sorghum, beans and agro-forests. Small holdings are prominent in densely populated areas of Homa Bay Town, Rangwe, Kasipul and Kabondo Kasipul where the main crops grown are maize, beans, pineapples, ground nuts and potatoes.

Main Storage Facilities

The main storage facilities in the county comprise cribs (75% and gunny bags (24%). Only a paltry 1% of the population appeared to use metal silos. The Catholic Diocese of Homa Bay assists farmers to get metal silos of various capacities. Use of hermetic bags is gaining popularity with farmers because they don’t require application of pesticide dust.

Agriculture Extension Training Research and Information Service

Agriculture extension service is provided majorly by the County Department of Livestock, Fisheries, Agriculture and Food Security and to a small extent by the private sector. The county gets research services from Kenya Agriculture and Livestock Research Organization (KALRO) Opapo Sugar Research Station, ICIPE Mbita, Kenya Marine and Fisheries Research institute (KEMFRI) based in Kisumu and Kenya Agriculture and Livestock Research Organization Kisii. There has been an Agricultural Training Center that has since been converted into Tom Mboya University College. Self Help Africa through an NGO called Rheal Solution has established cassava multiplication sites in most of the sub counties. International Sweet Potato Center (CIP) has also established sweet potato multiplication sites in Rangwe, Kasipul and Kabondo Kasipul sub counties.

Main Livestock Breeds and Facilities

The main livestock breeds reared in Homa Bay county are: the east African zebu for meat, milk and draught power, meat and dairy goats, indigenous poultry, indigenous sheep and to some lesser extent dairy animals and few exotic poultry, donkeys, a few pigs, ducks and geese. Emerging livestock including quails and ostrich keeping is yet to be introduced in the county and has great potential. Livestock keeping is practiced in all parts of the County. Livestock production facilities in the county include: livestock auction yards in major livestock markets of Nyangweso, Rodi, Kipasi, Mbita, Sindo, Pala and Magunga, Oyugis, Ringa, Oriang and 2 slaughter houses one in Homa Bay and the other in Oyugis.


There exists no known form of ranching in Homa Bay County. Ranching is not viable in the county due to the land subdivision into small unsustainable units. Ranching requires large tracks of land which does not exist as single units in Homa Bay.

Main Fishing Activities

Two main commercial fish species in the County includes Nile perch (L. Niloticus) which accounts for 37,000 Metric tons annually and dagaa (R. Argentae) accounting for 34,000 metric tons annually. Production of Tilapia which is a local delicacy is still low and it is sourced through capture fisheries and fish farming. The fisher folk in the County are organized into Beach Management Units (BMUs) and the County has a total of 133 Beach Management Units (BMUs) which are distributed in 141 fish landing sites where active fishing activities are undertaken. Homa Bay County has a relatively long lake shore with less polluted inshore waters bordering Uganda. The County produces approximately 50% of the total fish production in Kenya’s Lake Victoria.


Bee-keeping is practiced to a reasonable extent in Homa Bay County. A good percentage of farmers practice modern bee-keeping for honey production in Mbita (Kombe) and Kwethumbe in Gwasii and at Oyugis. The honey is semi refined at house hold level and marketed at farm gate (areas where apiculture is practiced and areas of potential).



Main Crops Produced

Agricultural activities occupy approximately 63% of the total land with 60% under food crop cultivation and the remaining 40% under cash crop cultivation. High potential regions of Uriri, Awendo, Kuria East, Rongo and parts of Suna East and Kuria West sub-counties are used for both food and cash crops production.

Acreage under Food and Cash Crops

Food Crops

The main food crops produced in the county include cereals (maize, sorghum, rice, millet); pulses (beans, cow peas, green grams, soya beans), roots and tubers (sweet potatoes, cassava).Due to availability of rainfall and favourable climatic conditions, the county has the potential to produce enough for its population and export the excess to the surrounding market if sufficient measures shall be instituted to address challenges farmers face in the production of these crops i.e. pests, marketing and poor harvest. The main factors hindering food production in Migori include rapid urbanization, water shortages, pest and diseases, climate change and the ever-growing population. In order to overcome these challenges and improve food security, the county government shall continue to provide farmers with inputs, promote agricultural mechanization, provide extension services and put measures in place to reduce post-harvest losses.

Cash Crops

The main cash crops grown in the county includes sugar cane and tobacco. Sugarcane is majorly

grown in Awendo, Rongo, and Suna East and West sub-counties while Tobacco covers Kuria East and west and parts of Rongo sub-counties. However, other cash crops such as coffee and tea are grown but to a small scale.


The county has good climatic condition that is favourable for growing of horticultural crops such as fruits, vegetables, flowers and ornamental plants. Already approximately 7,500 ha. under

horticultural cultivation where cabbages, capsicum and tomatoes are majorly produced.

Average Farm Sizes

The mean holding size of land in the county is 1.2 Ha (3.0 Acres) for the small-scale farmers which are mainly utilized for subsistence farming and livestock rearing. However in regions where rainfall is unevenly distributed such Nyatike and parts of Kuria East, the average farm sizes is relatively big varying between 5 ha and 10ha.

Main Storage Facilities

Most of the communities in the County still use traditional methods of storage including earthen pots, gunny bags, drums and granaries. However, with the existence of the National Cereals and Produce Board (N.C.P.B) depots at Awendo, Migori, Ntimaru and Kehancha, the surplus produce is stored.

Agriculture Extension Services

Agricultural sector extension service is critical in the dissemination and sharing of knowledge among farmers thus promoting household food security and incomes. Provision of adequate extension services in the county is usually curtailed by lack of motor vehicles and inadequate staff among other factors. The adoption of the electronic extension (e-extension) to cater for diverse needs of extension clientele in the county shall go a long way in meeting the goal

Training, (Training Institutions, Demonstration Farms Multiplication Sites)

The county has one Farmers Training Centre at Miyare. However, there are other institutions within the county offering services to the agricultural sector. These include Oyani Livestock Multiplication Centre, Agriculture Mechanization Service station (AMS Migori), Macalder Sheep and Goats Station and Lake Basin Development Authority (LBDA) at Rongo and Lichota. Additionally, the county collaborates with Rongo University College, Maasai Mara University (Narok), Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT), University of Nairobi (UON), Egerton University, Kenya Agriculture and Livestock Research Organization (KALRO), Kisii, Agriculture Technology Development Centre (Homa Bay) and Kisii Fish Multiplication Centre Currently, the county does not have a Research and Information centre, yet there is overwhelming demand for this service ranging from agricultural, livestock, fishing as well as human resource capacity building.

 Main livestock breeds and facilities

Majority of the livestock farmers in the county rear traditional breeds such as Zebu, a few exotic

breeds mainly crosses of Friesian and Ayrshire, East African goat, indigenous chicken and bees. Most of these livestock are bred for their sentimental value and are used only in emergencies to cover medical and transport costs, pay school fees, entertain guests and pay dowry. As a result, production of major livestock products has continued to remain low resulting in importation of the deficits from the surrounding counties to meet the huge local demand. The potential of practising modern livestock farming in the county is enormous given the good climatic conditions and fertile soils which support the growth of fodder crops especially in the upper

parts of the county. During the current plan period, efforts shall be made in collaboration with

development partners to empower farmers shift from traditional livestock to high yielding animals and poultry with the aim of increasing productivity, improving nutritional status as well as economic empowerment.

Ranching (Number, Ownerships and Activities)

The county has no ranches because most farmers keep indigenous livestock breeds which are grazed on free range. Besides this, there are no huge tracts of private land, a key pre-requisite for ranching.

Apiculture (Bee Keeping)

Due to availability of enormous bee forage, the county has tapped into this potential by providing 240 Kenya Top Bar bee hives to beneficiary cluster groups in Nyatike and Suna West Sub counties to substitute the existing bee-keeping methods such as use of traditional log hives and Langstroth. Each hive has an average production of 5 to 10 kgs of honey per harvest besides other honey products like wax and propolis.



Main Crops

The County produces food and cash crops. The food crops include maize, beans, finger millet, bananas, sweet potatoes, cassava, arrow roots, sorghum, tomatoes, carrots, avocados and vegetables. The cash crops include coffee, tea, pyrethrum and sugarcane.

Acreage Under Food Crops and Cash Crops

Total arable land in the County is 98,870 hectares out of which 70 percent is under food crop while 30 percent is under cash crop production. Crops are produced on small scale due to the small land sizes as a result of population pressure. To boost crop production and productivity, the County will need to promote modern farming technologies.

Average Farm Sizes

The County consists of mostly small scale farmers who own an average farm size of 0.4 hectares leading to low yields as these farms are not economically viable for mechanization. In order to improve the yields and income to farmers, there is need to promote innovative modern agricultural practices as well as promotion of high value crops to maximize outputs.

Main Storage Facilities

Most farmers store their produce in their houses and granaries since production is mainly for subsistence. The National Cereals and Produce Board (NCPB) in Kisii Town is mainly used to store farm inputs such as fertilizers and certified seeds.

Pre- and post-harvest losses as a result of poor harvesting techniques, inappropriate storage facilities and unsuitable facilities during the marketing process pose a great challenge to farmers. To address this, the County will need to promote the use of modern pre- and post-harvest technologies.

Agriculture Extension, Training, Research and Information Services

Agriculture extension service is mainly provided by the County Government; Parastatals; Nongovernmental Organizations (NGOs); Cooperative societies; private operators; and, Community Based Organizations (CBOs). These services are offered through Farmer Field Schools (FFS); field days; group trainings; individual farm visits; and, agricultural shows. However, the provision of these services is still minimal due to inadequate funding for mobility and poor coordination leading to low productivity. To enhance these services, there is need, therefore, to upscale funding and collaboration with other stakeholders.

Kisii Agricultural Training Centre (KATC) offers trainings and on-farm demonstrations to farmers on new farming technologies. Kisii University also trains students on agricultural education and extension.

The County has collaborated with Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organization (KALRO) in research and farm trials in a bid to promote best agricultural and husbandry practices.

Main Livestock Breeds and Facilities

The main livestock in the County are dairy and Zebu cattle, goats, sheep, donkeys, poultry among others. The presence of hides and skin bandas in the County and slaughter houses is a signal of a huge untapped potential in the leather industry. To support the growth of the leather industry in the County, there is need to encourage processing of all hides and skins in the County and set up cottage industries, construct a leather park and establish a tannery through PPP arrangements and access to finance. This will help create job opportunities to hundreds of youth.

Main Fishing Activities, Types of Fish Produced, Landing Sites.

The main fishing activities in the County are pond fish farming, shallow dams and river line fishing. There are over 3,500 households involved in this subsector with 3,820 fishponds spread across the County. The main fish species include tilapia and catfish.


Major forests in the County like Nyangweta in South Mogirango are not optimally used for bee keeping. Currently, apiculture is practiced in small scale, though there is high demand for honey due to the fact that it has medicinal value over processed sugar. Moreover, the developments of apiculture need to be encouraged as bees play a major role in pollination of crops.



Main crops produced

Nyamira County‘s economy relies heavily on Agriculture with over 80% of population depending directly or indirectly on agriculture. The performance of Agriculture Sector is thus very critical in influencing the overall economic growth and development of the County. Since the advent of devolution, the County government has put in various measures and interventions to improve the sector. Partnering with National Government and key Stakeholders in the Agriculture Sub sector has been embraced and this has contributed to our

overall achievements in the past five years. Despite the afore mentioned interventions, there still exists huge potential to grow the Sector; with special focus on Value addition & Agribusiness (cottage industry), Pest & disease control, Soil fertility improvement, intensive crop production systems, address climate & Agriculture, Agricultural financing & credit access, support to extension services provision, Food & nutrition security initiatives and soil and water conservation programs. The major food crops grown in Nyamira County include maize, beans, Finger millet, and sorghum

cassava, sweet potatoes, vegetables, fruits & other Horticultural crops. The major cash crops in the county include tea, coffee, pyrethrum, avocado and banana.

Food Crops:


Maize is one of the major staple food crops in Nyamira. It is mainly produced on small scale in four Sub Counties (Manga, Nyamira North, and Nyamira South & Masaba North) with most farm sizes under maize being between 0.25 acres to 0.75 Acres. In Borabu Sub County, production is mainly on relatively larger farms ranging between 4 Ha to 20 Ha. Maize, just like

the other food crops is grown twice in a year, with the main season being February to August and the Short rains season being September to December. The total land area under maize has remained relatively constant. In 2013, total acreage under maize was 31,546 ha giving a cumulative production of 44,780 MT of maize and by end 2017 season, the total land under

maize had marginally risen to 31,950 Ha giving a production of 45,504 MT of maize. Despite the favourable climatic conditions for maize and the various interventions, optimal production levels have not been attained with farmers recording as low as 4 Bags per Acre. To address this challenge, in 2013/2014; the County Government contracted Amiran Kenya to

conduct soil survey and analysis to determine the soil pH and nutritional status of our soils as a result, a special fertilizer blend was formulated and used alongside lime by farmers in 2014/2015 under the input subsidy program. Production increased remarkably from an average of 4 bags per acre to 18 bags per acre. However, the input subsidy program could not be

sustained due to budgetary constraints and thus this remains an area of intervention. The county is working on partnership with Homa Lime, Toyota, Tsusho Company among others to

avail liming materials & other inputs to farmers. The other major challenges facing maize production is pests and diseases, particularly Fall Army worm (FAW) and maize lethal necrotic disease (MLND), declining soil fertility and soil acidity. Impacts of climate change on maize production and Agriculture in general cannot be over emphasized. Some of the notable effects include: delayed onset and untimely cessations of rains, skewed rainfall distribution & intensity, occasional hailstorms, emergence of new pest sand diseases e.g. MLND & FAW. All these, among many others, require our interventions in

terms of Mitigation, adoption and adaption strategies, coping strategies to help cushion farmers against the impacts of climate change. Provision of safety nets is some of the possible areas of intervention by Government, NGOs & private sector players

b) Finger millet

Finger millet has over the years been a major crop particularly popular with the older generation but somewhere along the way, it was neglected and not much attention has been given to it. However, due to change of eating habits and people being conscious of their diets, it is again gradually gaining popularity. It is mainly utilized as flour for making ugali and porridge. In Nyamira County; it is grown in all the 5 Sub Counties and does well due to

favourable conditions. It is grown during both the LR season and SR season. In 2010-2013, the crop was promoted by the Directorate of Agriculture as an alternative to maize when there was an outbreak of MLND. In 2013, the total land under finger millet was1610 hectare and a production of 1,733.8 Ton i.e. approximately 5 bags per acre. By end of 2017, the total area under finger millet was estimated at 1640Ha, giving a production of 1771Tons, still averaging 5 bags per acre.

c) Beans

Beans are another major food crop and a primary source of plant protein. It is mainly intercropped with maize, though a few farmers grow the climbing bean as a pure stand during the short rains season. The major varieties grown in Nyamira County are; Mwitamania, rose coco, the red haricot and the climbing bean (mainly during short rains season). The acreage under beans is slightly lower than that of maize though 70% of the farmers plant as an

intercrop with maize. In 2013, the total area (LR +SR) under beans was 22,490 Ha giving a production 26,313 Tons and by 2017, the acreage had slightly increased to 22,520Ha giving a production of 27,024 tons

Bean production per unit are has remained relatively averaging 12 Bags per hectare (4.5 bags per acre). In 2014/2015, production rose slightly to an average of 15 Bags per hectare in those farms where farmers applied lime. This is an indicator that beans also respond to lime application. The low bean yields per unit area can be attributed to many factors, key among  them being that most farmers do not use certified seeds, high rainfall and occasional storms

during flowering and harvesting stage, low soil fertility and acidic soil. To address above challenges, soil fertility programs should be initiated, promote varieties that can tolerate high amounts of moisture and promote the adoption and use of certified seed.

d) Local vegetables

Local vegetables form an important part in the economy of Nyamira County. The County is known for the production of Black night shade, spider flower (Chinsaga) which attracts a lot of demand from the local market and the major urban centers in Kenya. To build on this, the County Government from 2013-2017 has supported farmer groups through provision of 210Kgs of certified local vegetables seed. This made farmers to record better yield per unit area and subsequently increased marketed volumes and incomes. To address post-harvest loses during peak production, the County government in collaboration with ASDSP and Kisii University procured and distributed 20 solar conduction driers to dry and preserve vegetables and fruits. This has helped the farmers to reach further markets; a case in point is a group which get orders from the USA.

e) Tomatoes

The county Government promoted greenhouse tomato production, with the aim of increasing production per unit area and increase incomes. A total of 80 greenhouses were procured and distributed to 80 groups. This translated to an average net income of Ksh.120, 000 per greenhouse per season. This cumulatively translates to approximately Ksh.19, 200,000 annually for the entire 80 green house, doing 2 cropping seasons per year. In some groups

however, this income could not be sustained due to group dynamics issues, water challenges among other issue.

f) Banana

Banana growing has been practiced in Nyamira for a long time. The local green banana has been the predominant variety grown by farmers and you will almost find growing in every homestead. The sweet variety (Kisukari) was very popular but has nearly been wiped out due to its susceptibility to panama disease. Banana production has been on the increase both in area

under banana and yields per unit area. Income from banana has also risen especially after the intervention by County Government and other partners like USAID, INFAS/Africa Harvest and ASDSP. In 2013, area under banana was estimated at 2,105 hectare with a production of 31,575 Tons (15Tons/Ha) and by 2017, the total area under production was 2259 Ha giving a total production of 42,475Tons of banana. This gave an estimated value of Ksh553, 600,000. In 2013/2014 Banana was identified as one of the flagship project that would contribute to economic development of the County. The major challenge then was overreliance by farmers

on the low yielding local varieties. To address this, County embarked distribution of banana Tissue culture materials as demonstration materials to farmers. Up to date, over 65,000 TC banana planting materials have been distributed. This has led to increased land under production, production per unit area (20 Tons/Ha) as well as the bunch sizes and quality and

ultimately the incomes at household level. Other interventions included training of farmers on husbandry and value addition. Other stakeholders have also done interventions in banana promotion. On banana value addition, the

County through partnership with World Vision and IFAD has put up a processing plant at Nyamusi. It basically processes banana into various products like flour, bread and other confectionaries. Formation of banana marketing groups to address issues of marketing has also been initiated to address marketing of banana.

g) Sweet potato

Sweet potato production has over the years gained popularity among Nyamira County farmers especially on the lower parts of the County, Bomwagamo, and Bokeria, Magwagwa, Bogichora and Nyamaiya wards. It is a food security crop and can do well in areas with low rainfall. The

major challenge in the promotion of sweet potato has been accessing certified clean planting material by our farmers. To address the challenge, the County Government sourced and distributed 62.5Ton of Orange and yellow flesh sweet potato vines. These varieties have seen farmers harvest up to 18 Tons per hectare which previously stood at less than 10Tons per hectare.

h) Cassava

Cassava is an important food security crop though it has remained relatively unpopular with most farmers. This stems from the lack of knowledge on its harvesting & utilization as food due to occasional cassava poisoning. However with proper farmer training on its utilization, it has a high potential in the county.

Cash Crops


Tea is the highest cash crop earner in Nyamira County. It is mainly grown under small scale with an average acreage of less than 1 Acre in all the 5 Sub Counties. Tea production, processing and marketing is mainly done by KTDA. The major challenge in the Tea sector is production under small land sizes which are less economical; hence most farmers enjoy low  rofit margins. This is further compounded by old tea bushes and old clones.

b) Coffee

The coffee sector over the past decades has faced a lot of challenges and as a result production has been on the decline in the entire Country. Land under coffee in Nyamira has drop to 1920 Ha from a high of 3000 in 1980s. Production per tree has also significantly dropped to an average of 2Kgs per tree. To revive the sector, the County Government in collaboration with

AFA Coffee Directorate, is in the process of distributing 20,000 coffee seedlings to farmers and training them on coffee husbandry.

c) Avocado

Currently, farmers grow the local avocado variety. This is mainly consumed locally and sold to traders who take to the major towns in Kenya. The County, through the department of Agriculture can take advantage of the favourable climatic conditions to promote the export varieties i.e. Hass and fuerte.

d) Pyrethrum

In 2013/2014, the county Government put in efforts to revive the sector by providing seedlings to farmers to establish nurseries for split bulking. A total of 8 nurseries were established and currently 2 are still operational. The total acreage under pyrethrum in Nyamira is 240 Acres with an annual production of 600Kgs.Currently plans are underway to collaborate with AFA pyrethrum directorate to revive the once vibrant sector.

e) Passion fruit

Passion fruit production is mainly done on small scale in Borabu, Nyamira north, Nyamira South, Masaba North and Manga Sub Counties. The crop does well due to the prevailing climatic conditions and fertile soils. The major challenge however has been access to clean planting material and the occurrence of fusarium wilt and woodiness diseases associated with

uncertified planting materials. To promote the crop, we need to invest in improving access to certified materials from registered nurseries and capacity building of farmers on production and marketing both locally and for export.

Acreage under food and cash crops

The acreage under food crops and cash crops in Nyamira County has remained relatively constant at 58,394 ha and 48,543Ha respectively. This has been due to favourable weather conditions, in most parts of the county, readily available labour force and the availability of ready market for crop produce both in urban centers in the county and the proximity to other

major urban centers such as Kisii, Kisumu, Oyugis, and Kericho. This offers incentives for the agriculture sub-sector to flourish. However, the major challenge to commercialization of most

crop value chains are declining soil fertility (acidic soils) and declining farm sizes and completion from non-crop enterprises.

Average farm sizes

The average farm size for cash crops and food crops per household is 0.70Ha. There has been over-subdivision of land in to uneconomic units in some parts of the county while other land parcels in the possession of large scale farm holders remain unutilized. Majority of the large commercial farms in the County are found in Borabu sub-county.

Main storage facilities

The main storage facilities in Nyamira County are silos, property of NCPB, Farm stores and warehouses. Cumulatively, the storage facilities have a carrying capacity of 5,808,592 bags with the silos carrying 2,000,000 bags, farm stores carrying 80,000 Tons and warehouse carrying 250,678 bags. Despite the foregoing, the County has a serious deficit of modern

storage facilities, hence the need to invest in a number of modern storage facilities. This will go a long way in addressing post-harvest loses and food safety measures.

Agricultural extension, training, research and information services

Extension services in the County are vibrant since we have extension officers up to the ward level. In 2014/2015, the County employed 70 extension officers on permanent basis and were provided with 40 new motor cycles to support extension service provision. There are no farmer training institutions in Nyamira County but we rely on Kisii Agricultural Training Centre.

Multiplication sites have not been established. Demonstrations are mainly conducted on identified farmers’ farms. The department collaborates with National research institutions, institutions of higher learning and National diagnostic laboratories to conduct small scale research and diagnostic services.

Climate change and agriculture

Over the years human activities have impacted negatively on the environment and release of greenhouse gases has depleted the ozone layer leading to climate change. The impact of climate change on agriculture is real. Impacts of climate change on Agricultural production and livestock production in general cannot be over emphasized. Some of the notable effects

include: delayed onset and untimely cessations of rains, skewed rainfall distribution and intensity, occasional hailstorms, emergence of new pests and diseases e.g. MLND & FAW in maize, tuta absoluta in tomatoes. All these, among many others, require our interventions in terms of Mitigation, adoption and adaption strategies, coping strategies to help cushion farmers

against the impacts of climate change. Provisions of safety nets are some of the possible areas of intervention by Government, NGOs & private sector players. Promotion of climate smart technologies in agriculture, fisheries and Livestock production extension should be mainstreamed as a matter of priority.

Main livestock breeds and facilities

Livestock production

The main livestock bred in the County are; cattle, goats, sheep, donkeys, poultry, rabbits and bee keeping. Dairy farming under zero grazing is gaining popularity due to diminishing land size, conducive weather conditions and ready market for milk. Though the County is self-sufficient in milk there is a lot of potential for developing dairy farming into an export enterprise. Beef farming is not feasible in Nyamira County due to the small land sizes which

can‘t sustain ranching. Therefore slaughter stock is mainly sourced from neighboring counties. Dairy goats are being popularized by the county through issuance to vulnerable individuals. The county intends to increase the number of dairy goats to reach more of such individuals. Indigenous goats are mainly for chevon (goat meat) though they do not satisfy the demand by residents and therefore the county imports most of the goats for slaughter. There are no wool sheep in Nyamira County. All the available sheep are for meat (mutton). Besides the above products, other livestock products are hides & skins, honey and bees wax. Over the last 5 years, approximately 87,320 Kgs of hides and 109,937 pieces of skins were produced and sold. Value addition of hides and skins (leather processing) has not developed in

Nyamira but there is potential for of leather processing factory. 10,800 MT of honey was harvested by 2017 compared to 270 MT recorded in 2013. This was a tremendous increase and there a lot of potential for cottage industries for honey processing and commercialization.

Cattle breeds:

There are two broad classifications of cattle breeds in Nyamira County, namely;

a) Zebu cattle (Indigenous breed), these are the small traditional breeds kept in the near marginalized lower wards of the county i.e. Nyamaiya, Bomwagamo and Bokeira wards. These areas are dry most of the year and do not sustain fodder production. Zebu cattle have high resistance to diseases but are low producers. The department has introduced superior breeds

through Artificial Insemination (AI) services as an intervention to upgrade the zebu offspring for increased production and productivity. This saw a reduction in the number of Zebu cattle from 28,595 in 2013 to 22,307 in 2017. However, there has been low uptake of AI by farmers who still use bulls. These breeds have mainly been used to provide draft power and meat. Meat production increased significantly from 515 MT in 2013 to 732 MT in 2017.

b) Grade (Exotic Breeds)/Crosses, various types of grade cattle are kept in the county. These include Friesian, Ayrshire, Jersey, Guernsey and their crosses. These breeds are high milk producers but highly vulnerable to diseases particularly tick borne diseases. To increase the number and sustain the superior breeds in the county the County government introduction

subsidized AI services and employed 20 trained AI service providers in 2104. Also AI kits and motorcycles for each service provider were procured. Each ward therefore has an Inseminator on call and AI services being readily available to farmers the number of dairy cattle has increased from 121,502 in 2013 to 187,692 in 2017. An increase in milk production from 47,887,650Lts in 2013 to 66,321,000Lts in 22017 was also witnessed. This was due to

adequate deliver and uptake of extension messages and adoption of AI as a better breeding technology.

The major challenges that face livestock development

a) Disease and pest control

Diseases have been a menace to livestock for a long time as delivery of veterinary services has

been wanting. Staffing levels and timely availability of drugs and vaccines are some of reasons.The common livestock pests which include ecto parasites and endo parasites still remain a major challenge to farmers. The cost implications for the control of these parasites are high and most farmers are not able to adhere to and follow prescribed control regimes. Since the

management of tick control was left to farmers tick borne diseases have been on the increase. Vaccination coverage has not also been optimal to effectively protect livestock against notifiable diseases which are Tran‘s boundary. This is because some farmers do not present animals for vaccinations while others abscond citing high cost. In 2107 only 16 % (47,500) of the total population of cattle (300,000) were vaccinated compared to an expected 70% (210,000) that was envisaged. Low uptake of breeding AI services in some wards.

The lower wards i.e. Bokeira, Bomwagamo, Nyamaiya have recorded low consumption of AI services provided by the County government. This has impeded the improvement of the many zebus kept in these areas. More extension efforts need to be employed here to change this attitude. Supply of liquid Nitrogen and semen from KAGRC has not been consistent leading to

a drastic decrease in the number of inseminations recorded in 2017 at 3,847 from 9,263 in 2013.


There are 3 major types of poultry kept by farmers in Nyamira County.

a) Indigenous;

almost every homestead keeps this category of chickens on free range. This type of poultry is popular as it is not labour intensive and numbers have been increasing over time from 405,786 in 2013 to 733,924 in 2017.

b) Layers

Commercial egg production is a fast rising enterprise in the county. Over the last 5 years more layers are being kept by farmers. In 2013 the county had 73,963 layers and this increase to 120,072 in 2017.

c) Broilers

Keeping of poultry for meat has not picked very well. Chicken being consumed in hotels are mostly from the indigenous stock. Through the extension staff, farmers are being to keep more broilers to meet the demands from the many hotels coming up in urban centers in the county. For the last 5 years the number of broilers kept increased to merely 6,437 from a paltry 752 in 2013. Indigenous poultry, culls from layers, and the broilers contributed to

poultry meat produced in the county. Over the 5 year period there was a significant increase in the amount of poultry meat produced in the county. In 2017, 2,160 MT of poultry meat were produced compared to 1,097 MT in 2013an increment of 1,063MT.

d) Other poultry species reared in the county include ducks whose numbers remained almost constant in the last 5 years (809 in 2013 and 943 in 2017). Keeping of turkeys is also notpopular as the numbers decreased over the same period (988 in 2013 to 694 in 2107). The sametrend applies to geese as there is no significant changes in their population over the same period (398 in 2013 and 435 in 2017). Proper linkages to markets are needed for farmers to undertake farming of these birds. There is potential in commercial poultry production in Nyamira as this venture doesn‘t need a lot of land. The main challenge facing poultry farmers is disease and pest control. The department has intensified extension to educate farmers on routine vaccination of birds and results are encouraging. Farmers are encouraged to regularly deworm their poultry.

3) Goats

There are two types of goats kept in Nyamira County, indigenous and dairy. The indigenous goats are majority and their population grew by 8,826 over the 5 year period (from 62,594 in 2013 to 71,420 in 2017). They are used for meat which is very popular. However, these numbers do not sustain the county population. Most of the slaughter stock is sourced from neighboring counties. Dairy goats are for milk production and department in partnership with other stake holders has been purchasing these goats and giving them to vulnerable groups or individuals. It has been proven that goat milk has some medicinal value and therefore people living with HIV/AIDS are the major beneficiaries. The number of dairy goats purchased and distributed increased from 1,075 in 2013 to 2,783 in 2017.

4) Sheep

Sheep are kept for meat in Nyamira County as there are no wool sheep. However, mutton is not popular with the citizenry, therefore the small number to be found in the county. Currently there are 24,327 sheep in the county an increase of 4,962 from 19,365 in 2013. Majority of these sheep are kept in Borabu sub-county.

5) Donkeys

Donkeys are majorly kept in Nyamira County for purposes of draft power and transport. However, their numbers are low. This is partly due their low rate of reproduction unpopularity among the residents. The donkey population increased from 4092 in 2013 to 5,007 in 2017. Challenges facing donkey keeping are many and mainly centre on negligence. Disease control

in donkeys is not taken seriously. Donkeys are rarely dewormed and injured ones are left on their own by roadside. Animal welfare lobby groups are hereby welcome to address this anomaly.

6) Rabbits

Rabbit keeping is not a popular enterprise among the farmers in Nyamira County. Most of rabbits kept here are under youths and school children. Culturally adults do not value rabbits so much. However, more youths and school children can be encouraged to start rearing rabbits as there is potential in it as an alternative white meat. The county recorded an increase in the

number of rabbits from 5,560 in 2013 to 7,621 in 2017. The other challenge facing rabbit production is non- acceptability to consumption of rabbit meat due to religious considerations.

Livestock Structures

Some of the livestock structures in the county include;

a) Dips: There are 6 public dips operational, all are in Borabu sub-county. More dips need to be erected to control tick borne diseases. In zero grazed units farmers spray their animals to control ectoparasites.

b) Milk Coolers: Three milk coolers have been distributed to 3 beneficiaries (BODAFA group, Peri urban & Gesima). The coolers will go into assisting in keeping milk fresh for collection and delivery to the processor.

c) Processors: One processor (Highland creameries) has been set up and operational in Borabu sub-county.

d) Feed millers: Three millers are operational in the county (NYAFA, One hen project, Manyara). These are privately owned and managed. The millers are not sufficiently serving farmers, as a big percentage of livestock feeds is imported. There is big potential for other players to invest in setting up more feed millers.

e) Hay barns: Two hay barns have been established in the county as opposed to none in 2013.

f) Zero grazing units: About 46,000 units are established in the county through the departmental extension staff. Because of the diminishing land sizes more farmers will be encouraged to put up zero grazing units for their stock.

g) Modern Slaughter houses/Slabs: In 2013 there were 7 slaughterhouses in 2013, by 2017 these had increased to 11. The county aims at encouraging private partners to put up more slaughter facilities so that each sub- county is serviced by 3 modern slaughterhouses.


To promote Aquaculture production and fisheries development, the county targeted to support a total of 2000 new fish ponds for period of five years (five year plan) at a rate of 20 fish ponds per ward per year. A total of 960 fish farming ponds have been stocked with a total of 960,000 certified fish seeds/fingerlings. Fish stocked were Nile Tilapia (Oreochromisniloticus) and

African Cat fish (Clariasgariepinus) at a ratio of 9:1. Fish farmers were also supported with initial supplementary fish feeds of 5 bags per fish pond with each bag weighing 20 Kgs against a target of 10 bags per fish pond. In order to ensure timely harvesting of ready mature fish from the ponds, the  irectorate targeted to support fish farmers with a total of 10 fish harvesting

pond seine nets per ward. Fish farmers have been supported with a total of 60 pond harvesting seine nets.

 Ranching (number, ownerships and activities)

There are no ranches in Nyamira County. This is partly attributed to the small farm sizes in the County. However, dairy farming under zero grazing is being adopted.

 Apiculture (bee keeping)

Bee keeping is one of the value chains that are gaining popularity with farmers in the County.Over the last five years, the County has promoted apiculture and as result has seen farmer record improved yields per hive. The number of farmers demanding and sourcing for modern hives has also grown over the past five years as follows: Kenya Top Bar Hives 1,700 Langstroth 4,473Log Hives 1,131Apiaries 2,107



Crop, livestock, fish production and value addition

This section gives the main crops produced in the County, acreage under food and cash crop, main storage facility, livestock breeds and number of ranches available in the County.

Main crops produced

Crop production and value addition is one component of urban agriculture in Nairobi that addresses food and nutrition insecurity in addition to  supplementing household incomes. Most of the crop production is to a large extent small-scale, market oriented and for subsistence where farmers have small portions of land. Horticulture farming takes lead in crop production in the County. The main vegetables grown include tomatoes, kales, spinach,

cabbage, local vegetables, onions, capsicum and carrots. Fruits grown include passion fruits, mangoes, bananas and avocado. Several varieties of herbs and spices are also grown. Cut flowers are also grown, especially in Lang’ata Sub-County. The main food crops grown on small scale basis, especially in peri-urban Sub counties of Dagoretti South, Lang’ata, Westlands, Kasarani and Roysambu are maize, beans and Irish potatoes. The crops are grown for both household consumption and commercial purposes.

 Hectares under food crops and cash crops .The limited space available for farming requires innovative urban farming technologies to maximize production per unit area. These technologies include utilizing all available spaces, vertical space, roof tops, greenhouse farming, micro gardening such as use of hanging gardens, multi-storey gardens and container gardens among others.

Average farm sizes

The land under cultivation is about 1,900 hectares. The average farm size is 0.53 acres in urban areas and 1.44 acres in peri-urban areas (Urban and Peri-urban Agriculture Project Survey Report 2012).

Main storage facilities

Nairobi, serves as a central point for the export and importation of agricultural produce that needs temporary storage for preparation before transit, distribution or sale. Therefore, there are many privately and publicly owned food storage facilities as detailed here below:

i.) National Cereals and Produce Board stores. These facilities store cereals, pulses, fertilizer and seeds for sale to farmers;

ii.) Milk processing plants. These are storage facilities for powdered milk and other processed and value added milk products which keep long;

iii. Milk coolers. These are owned by individuals and store excess milk.

Additional storage facilities are needed at designated County markets to preserve horticultural

produce which is very perishable. Cooling facilities are needed at city markets for the purpose of minimizing post-harvest losses in plant and animal produce.

Agriculture extension, training, research and information services

Agriculture extension services in the County are mainly provided by the public sector including the County Government, parastatals, and research and training institutions, and also by the private and civil society. Extension approaches and methods used include; demand driven and beneficiary led clientele groups’ focused, indigenous knowledge and technologies sharing. In many instances, beneficiaries share costs of extension. Clientele are reached through various extension approaches such as trainings, on-farm demonstrations, field days, trade fairs or exhibitions, exchange visits or tours and farm visits. Monitoring and evaluation is usually carried out to get feedback and to assess impact. Demonstration plots establishments at Jamhuri Show ground serve to showcase various farming technologies during the Nairobi International Trade Fair. The Agriculture sector conducts aflatoxin surveillance at cereal market stores to ensure food safety.

Main livestock and other animal breeds and facilities

Livestock production and value addition is a component of urban agriculture in Nairobi that addresses food and nutrition insecurity in addition to supplementing household incomes. Most of the livestock production systems are mainly small-scale, market oriented and for subsistence. The limited space available for livestock farming requires innovative urban farming technologies to maximize production per unit area. These technologies include utilizing all available spaces such as vertical, roof tops for small animals and make the most of feeds by-products; including feeds bulking from o_ -farm sources. Nairobi is the major market for livestock and livestock products from other counties where large supplies originate. To take full advantage of the proximity of the urban market, value addition of livestock products is promoted through urban livestock extension methodologies. Trained farmer groups are adding value to milk to turn it into yoghurt, ice cream; broiler and rabbit meat into sausages, samosas, prime cuts or pieces among other methods. Livestock production section plays a key role in capacity building of livestock farmers to realize maximum output per animal through forums such as field days, individual farm visits, group

training shows and exchange visits among others. The Department also plans programmes and projects to implement the extension activities, targeting the youth, women and the vulnerable.

According to the Sector Annual Report 2016, the Nairobi pig and poultry population is large,being 10% and 2.0% of the national population respectively. Livestock species and Population Livestock species Population

category and breed

Dairy cattle 27,984 Sheep 29,373

Beef cattle 15,751 Pigs 32,136

Dairy goats 7,609 Chicken – layers 184,146

Meat goats 28,572 Chicken – broilers 344,334

Rabbits 41,727 Chicken – indigenous 274,763

The above data shows major livestock products produced in Nairobi City County from 2012 to 2016. Livestock products and by-products in the county include milk, eggs, both red and white meat as the major animal based sources of food, hides, skins, honey and bees-wax. The County produces considerable livestock products though the quantities are insufficient

to meet the consumption needs of the resident population, with deficits being o_ set by supplies from other counties and other countries. For instance, the County produced 26,426,264 litres of milk in 2016 against a requirement of 273,750,000 litres per annum for a resident population of 3.2 million inhabitants, according to the 2009 Population and Housing Census and projected to be 6.3 million this year according to the World Population Review. Nairobi City produces 40% of its poultry egg needs and 18% of its dairy requirements. Poultry feeds are readily available since most of the commercial animal feed manufacturers are located within the County. Dairy feed resources are mainly hay, Napier grass, road side grass, straw,

organic waste from markets and industrial by-products. Chicken for meat, dairy goats, pigs, rabbits are reared for both subsistence and income generation. The County population is a big market for livestock products with the demand outstripping supply. Nairobi City residents also keep pets and draft animals, mainly dogs, cats, horses and donkeys.

There is also farmed and domesticated game. Dogs, and to a lesser extent cats, are kept for their provision of security forhomes and business premises and also for companionship. Whereas no census of dogs and cats has been done, it is estimated that there are over 1 million dogs in the city and over 200,000 cats. Donkeys are kept to provide power in conveyance of

goods destined for markets or water to homesteads. The 2009 Population and Household Census recorded the donkey population as 12,824 in the City.

There are an estimated 1,000 horses in the City which are used for sports, recreation riding and security services. The domesticated and farmed game is kept by residents on the strength of a permit issued by the Kenya Wildlife Services as provided in the Wildlife Conservation and Management Act. Residents have been issued with permits for commercial game farming

of ostriches, geese, quail, guinea fowl and crocodiles. Other permits have been issued for  keeping game as personal effects, more so with respect to parrots, parakeets and snakes. There are also permitted keepers of monkeys, cheetahs, lions and antelopes for educational and tourism promotion.


The County has no ranch left after the former ranches were subdivided into residential plots

for sale.

Main fisheries activities and types of fish produced

The main fisheries activities carried out in Nairobi County include aquaculture development (fish farming), fish quality assurance, fish value addition and marketing, promotion of recreational fisheries, implementation of fisheries management measures and compilation of fisheries statistics. The department of fisheries offers extension services to fish farmers aimed at increasing the production of safe fish. The main approaches used in provision of extension services include demand-driven farm visits, farmer group trainings, exhibitions, on-farm demonstrations as well as exhibiting at the Nairobi International Trade Fair (NITF). The Department is also mandated to ensure fish safety and does so through inspection of fishery enterprises and sampling of fish, water and fish feeds for official checks. The main fish species produced through fish farming are Oreochromis niloticus (Nile Tilapia) and Clarias gariepinus (African cat fish). Urban fish farming technologies in the County include fish ponds, fish tanks, aquaponics systems and aquariums for production of fish for foodand ornamental use. According to the Fisheries Department statistics, 2016, Nairobi County

produces 25 tons of fish annually which is approximately 3.5% of the total fish consumed in the County. Nairobi is the main domestic market for fish and fishery products from inland capture fisheries and marine capture fisheries as well as fish imports amounting to 698 tons in volume landed.

The main fish markets where fish is landed in large quantities are City Market and Gikomba Fish Market. Nairobi City County is also a host of two fish processing factories dealing in fish for export purposes mainly Nile Perch fish products and fish maws. Fisheries contribute an estimated Kshs. 2 million annually to the County in revenue. The fish industry in Nairobi

employs an estimated 3,000 people who work as fish traders, fish farmers, fish processors and providers of fisheries auxiliary services.


Apiculture (bee-keeping) is one of the enterprises most constrained in the County in terms of production due to rapid settlements coupled with bee-phobia. However, the County has a total of 3,620 assorted hives, with groups living on the fringes of Karura Forest in Westlands Sub-County being most actively engaged. There are 13 honey refineries in the City. The National Beekeeping Station is situated in Lenana in the City and offers training of beekeepers as well as honey processors. Bee-hive products that enter the food market include honey, propolis, royal jelly and bee-collected pollen. Honey is also used in the cosmetic industry. Beeswax is the main hive product that is used in the manufacture of candles.

Veterinary services

Veterinary services comprise of animal health and veterinary public health services. Nairobi City is the main terminal market for live animal trade in Kenya and is also a major transit point for animals destined to other counties and other countries. The City is therefore at high risk of introduction and spread of notifiable and trade-sensitive diseases. The common epidemic

diseases encountered in the City are; Foot and Mouth Disease, Lumpy Skin Disease, Rift Valley Fever, African swine fever, Anthrax, Rabies, Brucellosis, Salmonellosis and Newcastle Disease. The County Veterinary Services prevents and controls these disease threats as provided in the Animal Diseases Act, Chapter 364, which is done through monitoring, surveillance, vaccination, quarantine, treatment, stamping out and public education. Veterinary public health service utilizes veterinary science to protect human health in line with World Health Organization protocols. Under this service, the County Veterinary Services carries out programmes and projects to prevent human diseases transmitted from animals and also conduct sanitary inspection and approval of animal-derived human food such as meat, milk, eggs and honey as provided in the Public Health Act, Chapter 242, the Meat Control Act, Chapter 356, and the Nairobi City County Abattoirs and Meat Hygiene Act. In Nairobi City County the common human disease burden addressed by veterinary public health is brucellosis, rabies, bovine tuberculosis, Taeniasis, non-typhoidal Salmonellosis, Hydatidosis, Campylobacteriosis, verocytotoxin Escherichia coli, residues of veterinary medicines, as well as contamination of food with pesticides, aflatoxin, heavy metals, and dioxins. The veterinary services has approved and supervises 11 tanneries where value addition of hides, skins and leather is done, earning the leather industry an average of Kshs. 200 million annually. Nairobi City also has two animal pounds where accommodation and care of animals is provided. The Pangani Pound takes care of dogs and is very active while the Dagoretti Pound is supposed to handle other species of animals but is under-developed.

Soil and water conservation

Soil and water are the two basic resources which are under intense pressure from increased population. These resources affect the social and economic structure of villages and the whole nation. The Constitution of Kenya (2010) and the Environment Management and Coordination Act provide for the conservation of water, soil and biodiversity; protection of riverbanks, shorelines, riparian and wetland areas; sustainable production of wood,

charcoal and non-wood products; guidance on how fruits and fodder should be utilized; and sustainable green cover to facilitate carbon sequestration among other environmental services.In the County, soil and water conservation is done through establishment of terraces in slopes exceeding a gradient of 12%, use of trash lines and contour ploughing to reduce soil

loss. Land husbandry involves management of soil, water and vegetation as an integrated approach, which includes in-situ (in the original place) and ex-situ (offsite) water harvesting.