May 21, 2017

Kenya

With a single database and platform that allows exchange hosting, update and modification of system, FIT has licensed its FARMIS application to Sokopepe Limited in Kenya. Sokopepe is a social enterprise supporting the agricultural sector in Kenya by offering market information and farm records management services.

Licensed Package FARMIS is based on the simple idea that with farm records, a farmer or other stakeholders can have access to various reports which highlight husbandry practices, market trends, weather conditions and on-farm challenges. It can be used in risk assessment, insurance, extension and access to finance. Due to the ability to aggregate the reports and analyses, one can also carry out bulk marketing of farmers’ produce. These reports include production reports (yield, dis-aggregated by crop, identification of profitable lines etc), market reports (farm gate price, lorry price and others for comparative analysis) and profit and loss accounts, which can be used as evidence for decision making.

The country programme boasts of over 15,000 farmers profiled, traceable with at least 46% of the farmers with full farm records. It is operating mainly in three counties; MERU, Kiambu County and Embu county.

Facts about agriculture in Kenya
Agriculture supports about 80% of entire Kenyan population.

  • It contributes 25% of GDP
  • Source of almost 90% of all food needs
  • Single biggest livelihood option
  • Mainly rain-fed and is entirely dependent on the bimodal rainfall
  • Predominantly small-scale farming (averaging 0.2–3 ha)
  • Frequent droughts, crops fail in 1 out of 3 seasons.
  • 60% of farmers make less than USD 1.5 per day
  • Fertilizer use is about 1.7 kg/acre (global average is 60 kg/acre)
  • In 1971, 1 tractor for every 1700 farmers (1 in 4000 in Brazil). Now, 1 tractor for every 42000 farmers (in Brazil 1 tractor for 4 farmers)
  • Allegory of the plough vs hoe
  • Farmers are victims of inappropriate policies and project interventions
  • Wrong assumptions about resilience of the farming systems
  • Limited understanding of the linkages between the assets possessed, livelihood strategies pursued and the livelihood outcomes achieved
  • Climatic variability creates uncertainty about the future sustainability of farming system
  • No accurate data about what is produced, where it is, how much it is, etc