Kenya Agricultural Productivity and Agribusiness Capacity Building Programs and Agribusiness Development
AbstractTo affirm the significance of Agribusiness, the Government of Kenya (GOK) formulated two strategies: The Agriculture Sector Development Strategy (ASDS) and the National Agribusiness Strategy (NARS). The ASDS is a ten-year strategy whose overall goal is to transform Kenya’s agricultural sector into an innovative, commercially oriented, competitive and modern industry that will contribute to poverty reduction, improved food security and equity in rural and urban Kenya. NARS proposed systems and structures required to-bring about a dynamic and competitive agribusiness sector in Kenya. The strategy recognizes the importance of the agribusiness sector and the key role it could play in realizing Kenya’s vision 2030. The aim is to deliver wealth creation, job creation and food security within national borders, even in a context of rapidly changing climate and environmental degradation. To motivate the agribusiness sector as highlighted in the ASDS, the Kenya Agricultural Productivity and Agribusiness Project (KAPAP) through the 12 years Adaptable Program Loan (APL) with support from the World Bank, designed capacity building programs. The aim was to empower farmers; improve agricultural extension systems; establish an efficient agricultural research system; encourage growth of agribusiness, and improvement of environmental management. This paper explored the effectiveness of KAPAP’s capacity building programmes and their effect on agribusiness and food security. The paper collected primary data from public and private extension officers and farmers who benefited from KAPAP’s programs and who were previously trained in Entrepreneurship and Business Planning through collaboration between KAPAP and the Technical University of Kenya (TUK). The paper records a positive impact of KAPAP capacity building programs on agribusiness development as evidenced in significant increase in per cent sales, profitability, value addition in dairy, groundnut, potato, and honey value chains. There was also increased interest in agribusiness and cumulative improvement in food security. Regions that reported significant improvement in productivity and farming mechanisms were the same ones that reported higher levels of skills transfer. The paper recommends gender mainstreaming, succession planning and introduction of agribusiness training in TVET institutions.
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