Kenyan agricultural firms get $5m grants
Workers at a macadamia nuts processing factory
Seven budding Kenyan companies operating in the agricultural sector have received a $5.1 million grant from the United States to expand their business activities while working towards addressing the country’s food insecurity challenges.
The United States Agency for International Development (USAID), in partnership with the US government’s trade promoter, Prosper Africa, and Feed the Future Initiative announced the grants on the side-lines of the American Chamber of Commerce (AmCham) business summit in Nairobi Wednesday.
The agencies said the grants to the private companies will “support access to agricultural inputs and production technologies while expanding Kenyan value-added processing and the export of products like macadamia nuts and dried fruit”, as well as boost incomes for over 1 million Kenyan farmers.
“This comes at a time when many of these farmers are faced with recurrent drought and significant price increases especially in essential commodities that has been driven by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine,” said USAID’s mission director for Kenya David Gosney.
Drought in Northern Kenya pushes millions towards hunger
Mr Gosney said the seven companies selected for this grant were chosen because they are “investing in solutions to improve the lives of Kenyan farmers and to create new jobs and new economic opportunities”.
The grant’s beneficiaries are Regen ($1.2 million) – an organic fertiliser producer, Sunculture ($800,000) – which makes solar irrigation systems, iProcure ($1.2 million) – an agricultural procurement platform and Afrimac Nut Company ($450,000) – an exporter of locally processed macadamia nuts and oil.
Others are Exotic-EPZ Kenya ($1 million) – a processor and exporter of Macadamia nuts and Goshen Farm Exporters ($300,000), which will “expand its processing capacity and market compliance, enabling them to export to the USA and other premium markets”.
Victory Farms, which operates fish cages in Lake Victoria and sells fresh fish produce across Kenya, also received $150,000, with which it is expected to “quadruple its operations over the next five years”.
Kenyan aquaculture company Victoria Farms
USAID’s deputy assistant administrator Michael Michener said the organisation will continue to roll out such grants in the future to support Kenyan farmers gain wider access to markets for their products.
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