Commercialization Of Sorghum Farming
The Ndagaywa Farmers Group in Siaya have partnered with the USAID’s Kenya Agricultural Value Chain Enterprises Project (Kaves) in an attempt to link small-scale sorghum farmers to a guaranteed market. The group that has more than 2oo members has sorghum collection centers where farmers deliver their sorghum for weighing and transportation to NCPD stores in Kisumu.
Through Kaves, farmers in the region were linked to Transu, a private company which buys sorghum in bulk. Transu partners with a financial institution which offers soft loans to farmers and insurance companies which cover the crop, thus minimising risks.
The farmers are also trained on good agricultural practices, and the benefits of working as groups. Transu is currently working with over 10,000 workers in Nyanza. However, this number is set to increase as more become aware of the benefits of crop diversification, contract farming and working in small groups.
Kaves identified a challenge in the linkage of smallholder farmers to the market, and connected them to aggregators who had contacts with buyers.
In a bid to bridge the gap, Kaves has been working with small and medium size enterprises, which aggregate produce such as sorghum and market it on behalf of smallholder producers.