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About Us

Mt Kenya Gardens is a private service provider company formed in the year 1996 with a sole objective of organizing smallholder farmers to produce and market fruits and vegetables, both in the domestic and export markets. The company owned by two partners (Gerald & Rosemary) enjoys the experience they attained in agriculture extension skills they achieved when working for the Government of Kenya. Our raw material production base is in the larger Meru and Embu Districts in the eastern foot hills of Mt.Kenya.

Mt Kenya Gardens believes that empowering smallholder farmers to be able to produce fruits and vegetables responsibly would spur their own development and sustainable agriculture across board. Hence, Mount Kenya Gardens focus on promoting initiatives that bring about food safety, improve quality and volumes. This has brought about employment to the community and as thus development.

 

Mt Kenya Gardens focuses on creating growth and results through partnerships and cooperation, developing synergies and allowing talent to flourish in the global fruit and vegetable industry. We employ more than 300 staff . With a company history stretching back over 15 years producing, sourcing supplying and trading in the country fresh fruits and vegetables, Mt Kenya Gardens provides an integrated supply chain from the grower source to all market segments and customers globally.

VISION
To be the best extension service and market link provider of choice for the rural smallholder farmers in the country and region.

To participate in complete horticulture value chain management through scaling up production, value addition and marketing, while ensuring best gains by all players.

MISSION
Strive to empower our small holder farmers to maximize quality production of commodities that are acceptable at the market place, through innovative and sustainable methods while conserving the environment
 
Our Values:
We uphold the following values:-

  • Highest standards of integrity
  • Respect for individuals
  • Dedication to helping our producers and customers
  • Innovations
  • Innovative farmer extension package.
  • Team work.

 
We will always;-

  • Act in accordance with our values.
  • Be responsive to customers and employees, and producers.
  • Learn more about our business
  • Act professionally
  • Be honest
  • Meet and follow up our commitments
  • Coach, support, empower and involve each other; - farmers, staff and customers

 
Our Potential :- Our strength lies in:

  • Our enormous technical skill as results of long term job experience.
  • Our highly fertile agro-ecological zone on the slopes of Mt.Kenya. 
  • Our willing farming community.
  • Our good, highly trained and competent staff.
  • Our ability market high quality and competitive.
  • Our well-established operation base for coordination of all activities.
  • Our excellent network with key stakeholders and collaborators.
  • Our reliable transport facilities.
  • Our use of HCDA cooling deport in the production area.

Our important ideas and projects in the year:
1) Information Technology: So as to manage our production.
To install computers in our buying centres so that receiving and paying for fruits and vegetables is efficient.
ICT will improve our services in many ways and this is evident from the few computers we have in our offices. Improve the capacities of our staff in ICT through training.
 
2) Farmer and staff empowerment through vigorous training. This will culminate in achieving the various standards in traceability and global GAP.
3) Farmer buying centre development. These will consist of field stores, buying shed and improved fruits and vegetable washing points.
4) Develop three modern fruit ripening stores. This will be accomplished through buying ethyl catalytic generators and installing two in Nairobi and one in Meru. Mount Kenya Gardens will be the pioneer in this modern fruit ripening.
5) Open up Kisii farmers for growing Apple Bananas and purchasing the available crop which will be ripened in Nairobi. Train to empower these new farmers in modern Banana farming.
6) Introduce banana fruit maturing polythene bags. To import the bags from Egypt and sell them to the farmers so as to improve on the quality.
7) Open up an extra 200Ha of bananas and Papaya from the small scale growers. This is to increase on the production of quality fruits which is our main goal.
8) Open up other vegetable growing areas according to the presented newly installed water projects.
9) Explore the possibility of exporting fresh pineapples to Egypt.
10) Proceed with the new innovation of packaging which had stalled last year. Produce modern banana cartons and labels which is demanded by Nakumatt Market stalls. To be the pioneers in this line.
11) Finish and implement the company restructuring programme already started so as to have policy, and workable systems laid down.
12) Improve our post-harvest skills in fruit harvesting and transportation.
 
OUR CONSTRAINTS:

(a). Training:
Farmer groups training in the following important areas:-
- Use of soil and soil fertility
- Fertilizers in relation to the soils in the region.
- Rainfall patterns of the area in relation to the soils.
- Modern science of Banana and Papaya production.
- Water management in vegetable and fruit production
- Post harvest management of fruits and vegetables.
- Vegetable good Agricultural practices to achieve various local and international standards.
- Training in farmer group organization so as to view Agriculture in the commercial extent.
- Exposure to other sustainable projects.
 
 (b).   Management and Staff Training:
- Empowerment in good Agricultural practices
- Awareness of various horticultural crops gross margins so as to help in selection of enterprises.
- Training in production standard requirements.
- Training in Information Technology
- Training in Ripening and Packaging of fruits
- Company systems implementation and statutory requirements.
- Social and environmental issues
- Business Management skills.

(c).   Trading:
- Seasonal Cash flow problems;- Financing farmers in vegetable and fruit production through provision of inputs is very difficult before the produce is ready for market.
- Local of exposure to the foreign markets.
- Poor financial management skills and producer/customer negotiation acumen.
- Fresh produce poaching by unprofessional exporters.
- Poor rural infrastructure.
- Poor fluctuations in the production areas.
- Inability to produce enough capital for fruit and vegetable value addition.
- Poor production inputs in the market
- Expensive packaging equipment: - Labeled cartons, empty crates and polythene bags.

(d).   Customer:
- Training in modern store arrangement to attract customers.
- New innovations where packaging / labeling are introduced.
 
BUSINESS SUPPORTERS:
1. Technoserve - American NGO                                  
      - Training:- Twice/year.
2. Ministry of Agriculture- Creation of fruit/vegetable farming awareness.
3. Office of the President. -Contracts and agreements witnessing.
4. Methodist Church in Kenya - Fruit farming awareness.
5. H.C.D.A -  Parastatal in charge of horticulture development.
6. Frigoken/Everest - Buyers of the vegetables.
7. Nakumatt/Uchumi - Main fruit buyers.
 
FUTURE INTERVENTIONS:
1) Production Capacity Building  - Vigorous training;- Farmers, Staff and Management.
2) ICT Support - develop a world class IT- infrastructure to support our business processes          
3) Trade capacity building 

- Sourcing of partners for capital in value addition
- Acquisition of standards
- linkage to sources of finance to purchase farmer  production inputs.

- Linkage to potential customers in Europe and China.
4) Packaging / Labelling.- Modern Banana ripening cartons.
5) Sourcing of inputs and packaging equipment locally and abroad.
6) Support in kind in the construction of farmer buying centres.
7) Support in company structures/systems document.
8) Importation and distribution of banana maturing polythene bags to farmers.

 

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