Agri-business startups set to revolutionize local agricultural sector

Agriculture in Kenya continues to play a significant role in the country’s economy. According to FAO, the sector accounts for 26% of the gross domestic product (GDP) and another 27% indirectly through linkages with other sectors.The agricultural sector also contributes above 65% of Kenya’s total exports earnings and provides more than 40% of the total population with employment. The sector has continued to grow at almost 5% annually while exhibiting further potential for expansion.It therefore goes without saying, that the growth of the national economy is highly correlated with the progression of the agricultural sector.

Three out of every four Kenyans work in the agriculture and food production chain. This means that economic growth in agriculture is eleven times more effective at reducing poverty than growth in any other sector. Despite the huge impact that agriculture has on the Kenyan economy, there are still a number of challenges facing the sector such as poor transport and communication and poor farming methods. These challenges impede on the ability of the sector to fully grow.

Various stakeholders are making their contributions towards alleviating various challenges crippling the sector. Hot on this list are start-up companies that are being driven by the need to make this sector even more lucrative for various populations. Here is a list of start-ups revolutionising the agricultural sector.

Arinifu is a technology company that aims to enhance farming in Kenya and Africa at large through technological innovation and making it accessible to both low and high-income farmers. They have come up with an environmental control device for chicks, known as ‘the smart brooder’ which ensures the conditions within the brooding space are kept within optimal levels, thus increasing efficiency and ultimately leading to better overall results in the health and development of the chicks.

Kibogo Innovate is a company specializing in the production of organic fertilizers. They use only locally sourced raw material, from non-traditional organic sources. They have customized products to meet and exceed expectations of small scale farmers who traditionally were not using fertilizers or were using in small quantities. This helps farmers lower input cost, raise production and profitability while giving them peace of mind to know that they are also enriching and replenishing soil nutrients vital for healthy crop production.

Lake View Fisheries Limited is a company that dealswithcreating a network of micro franchise fish vendors deployed in some of Lakeview Fisheries’ 500 locations within Nairobi. Each business comprises a fish vendor strategically placed in a low income settlement equipped with a patented temperature controlled fish transport box that rapidly cools the payload to the desired temperature and uses sensor technology to maintain and stabilize the temperature. It enables transport and storage of fish at the correct temperature and works without an external power source. It is backed by a cloud based GPS tracking system so that the location and quality of produce can be verified at any time.

M-Farm Limited is a platform that helps farmers and buyers communicate and make transactions effectively. It helps farmers discover exactly what their crops are worth and helps them plan to grow what the market needs at the right time, to get the best price. It also enables buyers to source efficiently by knowing who is selling what, when and where and also helps them get the right quality product, at the right time and at the best price.

Taimba is a business to business mobile-based online platform connecting farmers to retailers. They source from the farmer saccos at affordable prices that are farmer friendly and offer the retailers the fresh produce at lower than market prices. They cut wastage and make farmer products affordable without undercutting the farmer.

Make a point of looking into them and give us your feedback. Thanks!

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