Eldoret Polytechnic was abuzz with activity as thousands of farmers in Uasin Gishu County took time to interact with different players in the agribusiness space, thanks to an agribusiness exhibition organized by Moiben Connections Ltd in Eldoret.
Moiben Connections is a leading agro inputs distributor supporting farmer access to services and products from leading companies like Syngenta East Africa Limited, Bayer East Africa Limited, Osho Chemical Industries Limited, Ultravetis East Africa Limited, Norbrook Kenya Limited, Mea limited, among others.
The inputs distributor held the expo with support from the Uasin Gishu County Government and Kenya Markets Trust.
Promoting climate smart agriculture
The objective of the expo was to promote climate smart agriculture and business linkages for improved agricultural productivity and income.
“Initially we thought the agrochemical business is just buying the fertilizer, the agrochemicals and selling to the farmer. Along the way we realized that there were many gaps. We realized there was need for a forum where we could give an all inclusive package to the farmer.” Said Antonio David, Director, Moiben Connections Ltd.
75 exhibitors drawn from input firms, financial, government and non-governmental institutions exhibited their products and services to more than 7,000 farmers who attended the expo. Some of the services and products on exhibition included soil testing, use of agricultural lime, improved variety of crop seeds, use of crop protection products, fertilizers, irrigation technologies, farm machineries, financial services and export markets access.
The expo was also a great forum for exhibitors to increase awareness of their products, unveil new products and innovations, test their company’s competitiveness and strengthen their existing business network in Uasin Gishu County under Moiben Connections Ltd.
“We are teaching farmers to produce food without negatively affecting the environment, produce food in high quantities and high quality so that together we can not only rely on these farmers to feed us but also to export” said Captain Job Kareithi, Director, Bio deposits Africa one of the exhibitors. Farmers will need to not only access to quality inputs but also the right information on how to use them which is what KMT’s intervention seeks to address.
It was an eye opener to the farmers. Stanley Barnoo a small-scale farmer was optimistic saying “You have given us information that people in the villages don’t know but now that we know, we are going to improve.”
For Esther Melly a large-scale farmer, “ I wanted to start with the soil because that is the basic, know whether my soils are good so that I improve production per unit.”
Creating an enabling environment for horticulture business linkages
On the side-lines of the exhibition, the partners in collaboration with Fresh Produce Exporters Association of Kenya (FPEAK) held a business forum themed “Creating an enabling environment for horticulture business linkages”. Over 70 stakeholders drawn from the county government, agribusiness sector regulators, horticultural exporters, input suppliers and financial institutions discussed production and marketing of export horticultural crops. Issues addressed at the business forum included market access; regulation and standards; production and processing systems; logistics; exploitation of cargo space available on planes transiting through Eldoret Airport; and access to finance by value chain actors.
The hugely successful Eldoret expo follows the Mwea Expo held in June last year.
Kenya Markets Trust, funded by the UK’s Department for International Development (DFID) and the Gatsby Charitable Foundation (GCF) supports access to information and quality inputs by smallholder farmers to increase their productivity and thus boost Kenya’s food security.
Smallholders in Kenya have limited access to appropriate information on quality products, new technologies and farm support services. Inputs suppliers, on the other hand, do not have efficient systems for delivering information on products, services and new technologies to smallholder farmers. Through field days and exhibitions, input farms will fill in this gap and bring a long lasting solution.