The County Government of Nyeri has launched a leather Goods Production Unit at Rukira Vocational Training Centre in Mahiga ward, Othaya. Through the Buy Nyeri, Build Nyeri initiative, the County is supporting the cottage industry with the leather Goods Production machines and ensuring production of local leather goods like bags, wallets, belts and shoes is done locally. The production unit has capacity to produce 900 pairs of leather shoes a da . The unit has a 25 tonnes hydraulic swing arm clicking machine, a heavy skiving machine with a dust collector, twin head bottom roughing machines with a dust collector, a hydraulic toe-lasting device with 9-pincers with cementing, and a heating chamber. In collaboration with Kenya Industrial Training Institute (KITI), the County Government has offered training to ten Trainers of Trainers (ToT) on the following areas; theory, pattern making and designing of the shoes, shoe production, and how to operate the leather-making machines. This initiative is aimed at producing leather products at a large scale at an affordable price for both residents of Nyeri County and surrounding Counties.
Kenya is among the top five African countries with large livestock numbers but due to expensive processing and high-quality leather export requirements, there are less leather production and manufacturing factories in the Counties. The County Government of Nyeri is focusing on producing leather products for the local/ Kenyan market with prospects of increasing the quality and produce to cater for the international markets. With training on the art of shoe making in the Technical and Vocational Education Training (TVET), the County aims to produce qualified graduates who will provide labour to the manufacturing industry.