KMT Research

Meat End Market Trends in Kenya

This study aimed at achieving objectives that are critical to establishing and understanding consumer preferences and retail practices for livestock products in Kenya. The study was conducted in a number of major counties in Kenya i.e Eldoret, Nakuru, Kajiado, Kakamega, Makueni, Machakos, Nairobi, Garissa, Kiambu, Mombasa, Kwale, Kilifi and Kisumu.


Livestock is an important sector for the Kenyan economy

It has significant potential to increase competitiveness and benefit millions of people.

Domestic demand for meat has been historically strong, driven by urbanization, a growing middle class and exports which create demand for product differentiation, safety and quality.

Kenya’s meat sub-sector is hugely informal and fragmented.

Very few organised processors are buying directly from livestock producers.

The Distribution

Nairobi and Mombasa cities remain the key terminal markets for meat, accounting for 75% of country’s consumption.

The Deficit

With an annual meat deficit of 300,000 metric tonnes, Kenya’s meat industry still largely operates sub-optimally, with huge post-harvest losses, low value addition, poor processing skills and low capacity for quality and safety standards.

The Information Gap

Lack of accurate information on meat consumption patterns and segmentation has been a major barrier to strategies that are designed to develop and transform the livestock and meat industry in the country. For example, meat traders seeking to target specific consumer cohorts haven’t been able do so due to the absence of information on consumption patterns, demographics, preferences as well as demand profiles.

What Do the Finding Tell Us?

The findings reveal an increasing number of consumers demanding for quality meat, accounting for an additional 54,000mt for beef in the market.

This shows that investment in modernization of the meat industry would add value to the meat processing, product differentiation, food quality and safety and in turn enable the industry to meet the increasing demand for quality meat up from the current 66,000mt to 240,000mt. With better sector and industry coordination, these investments will translate to increased profitability, jobs and wealth creation as well as a larger contribution of the sector to Kenya’s GDP.

About This Research

Objectives Of The Study

Patterns and Preferences

To establish with probable accuracy, current meat consumption patterns and preferences in Kenya (choice of meat, demography, location, socio-economic status)

Cold Meat Consumption

To establish the current knowledge levels and information awareness on cold meat consumption among Kenyan meat buyers

Cold Chain Gaps

To establish current knowledge levels and gaps in cold chain practices in Kenya


To generate a critical analysis on the market intervention, need for a sustainable cold chain retail and consumption practices in Kenya

Organization Of The Report

Section 1.

Chapter 1

The first chapter highlights the background and the context of this study, clearly presenting a justification for the study. In addition, this chapter presents the objectives of the study and the key deliverables.

Section 2.

Chapter 2 - 3

The second section is a brief literature review report. This presents a deeper understanding of the context and the existing information on meat consumption patterns globally.

Section 3.

Chapter 4 - 6

The study findings are presented in chapter 4 to 6. The findings are structured around the study objectives, with chapter 4 presenting findings for objective 1, chapter 5 presents the findings for the objective 2 and 3 while chapter 6 presents objective 4.

Section 4.

Chapter 7

The second chapter is a brief literature review report. This presents a deeper understanding of the context and the existing information on meat consumption patterns globally.

Meat Consumption Patterns & Preferences

Types of Meat Consumed in Households

High Income Households

Majority of consumers in the high-income segments consume chicken (96%) followed by fish (90%) then beef (79%) and goat meat (73%) in that order Pork and mutton are consumed by minority of consumers in this segment, as presented by only 35% and 23% of consumers in this category respectively.

Middle Income Households

In the middle income, chicken is eaten by majority of consumers (88%) followed by beef (82%), then fish (76%) and goat meat (69%) in that order Just like the high-income segment, pork and mutton is consumed by minority of the consumers in this segment as presented by 24% and 17% of the consumers in this segment.

Low Income Households

In the low-income category, majority of the households consume beef (84%) followed by chicken (82%) then fish (79%) and goat meat (70%) As with other segments, results show that pork and mutton is consumed by minority of the consumers as cited by 25% and 22% of the consumers in this segment respectively

Factors That Determine Preference For Different Types Of Meat & Meat Products

Health concern and price are the major factors determining the preference for different types of meat. The Y-Axis shows percentages of the income segment

  • Low Income
  • Middle Income
  • High Income

Attributes That Consumers Use To Define Quality Of Meat

Leanness/absence of fat

Fresh of meat (slaughtered the same day)

Taste of the different types of meat

Frequency Of Consumption Of Different Meat Types

The Y-Axis shows percentages of the population surveyed

Low Income

  • Mutton
  • Goat Meat
  • Beef

Middle Income

  • Mutton
  • Goat Meat
  • Beef

High Income

  • Mutton
  • Goat Meat
  • Beef

Current Knowledge Levels, Gaps And Information Awareness On Cold Meat Practices In Kenya

Meat Preservation At The Household Level

Majority of households in the high- and middle- income segments use refrigeration to preserve meat, as reported by 92.3% and 51.6% of the households respectively

In the middle income segment, 33.4% however indicated that they do not preserve because meat is consumed the same day it is bought

In the low income segment, majority of the households (54.1%) do not preserve but rather consume meat the same day it is bought, while some 12.7% preserve by boiling

A Study on Meat End Market Trends in Kenya

This study is the first step towards understanding the meat consumer market in Kenya in terms of trends, preferences and purchasing patterns, alongside meat retails practices.


Format: PDF

Full: 1.3 MB


A Dawn of a New Chapter for Kenya Markets Trust

After years of successfully working together as partners with a shared mission of transforming sectors in East Africa, Gatsby Africa, Kenya Markets Trust and Msingi East Africa have decided to integrate and become one entity as of April 01, 2022.

The new integrated entity will be called Gatsby Africa – a philanthropic entity of Lord David Sainsbury and will operate across six sectors in East Africa – Commercial Forestry, Aquaculture, Textiles and Apparel, Livestock, Agricultural Inputs, and Water.

We believe that the ambition and vision of the new organisation, coupled with the breadth of our portfolio, puts us in a strong position to deliver a meaningful level of impact for millions of people in the East African region. It equally strengthens our ability to generate and share our learning with others.

Coming together allows us to leverage the strengths of the three organisations, brings efficiency to how we work, and ensures we have a greater impact in our work.

What does this mean for the work that we have been passionately championing over the years? There will be no changes to the focus and modalities of how we work or our shared commitments – our three existing programmes will continue to operate in the same way they have always done.

We will be launching the new integrated Gatsby Africa organisation on April 01, 2022. By mid-April, we will share with you a link to our new website and official social media handles. However, we will retain our current website for a minimum period of six months, so that our knowledge materials are available to you. We shall be moving these over to our new website so that nothing will be lost.

As an organisation, we are excited about the opportunities that this integration brings for our people, partners and the sectors we work in. We are humbled by the collaboration and good working relationship we have had with all our different stakeholders and look forward to continuing working with you in the new organisation.