Kenyan producers seeing interest from China

Many producers are looking towards Asia to expand their businesses and Kenyan growers are no different. Many traditionally export to Europe and the UK, but one company is looking further afield.

Urban Fresh Ventures was at the Amsterdam Produce Show to promote their produce to Europe but, according to June Gathoni from the company, they have also set their sights towards the east.

Urban Fresh produce a range of beans, herbs, chillies and fruit.

"We have 700 acres under production and then we also have tunnels where we grow the high value vegetables, so our production is quite big and we have the capacity to increase it even further," explains June. "In addition to our own production on our own farms we have contract growers in Kenya and Tanzania. "Our main products are French beans, snow peas, sugar snaps, chillies and herbs both fresh and dried, mangoes, avocados and passion fruit.

"In the last few years the demand for herbs has increased considerably. I think it has to do with the chefs on TV using more fresh products which has upped demand. We didn't even grow them before, but now every other customer wants herbs so we have been able to get into that market.

"The climate is a worry for all growers wherever they are, this why we have invested in tunnels, we need to be able to produce year round and not worry about availability. We also have drip irrigation for our open field crops which means we don't have to worry about a lack of water," said June.

At the moment the company exports to the Netherlands, France, Hong Kong, Dubai and Qatar.

"We are always looking for new markets, we are seeing if we can penetrate the Asian market with Asian vegetables. We are even seeing some interest from China and in the coming two years we will concentrate on these markets, there are also possibilities in the other African markets as well."

For more information:
June Gathoni
Urban Fresh Vegetables
Tel: +254 721 644 863

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