Skip to main content

Agricultural strategic planning - Absence of strategy or poor communication by the government

Why is agricultural strategic planning important? Absence of strategy or just poor communication by the government of Kenya?

 Why is agricultural strategic planning important? Absence of strategy or just poor communication by the government of Kenya?

I know we have all heard about this statement that failing to plan is planning to fail, and Kenya's agriculture is a perfect case in point.

If you are a professional in the field of agriculture in Kenya, please take a moment and ask yourself the following questions:

  1.         What next for Kenyan agriculture?
  2. What is the government's plan on agricultural development for the next ten years?

NB: Please do not be creative or innovative as you answer. Let your answer be a reflection of what is already known by the general public.

I am not an angel predict, but I suspect that if I were to sample responses from ten people, I would get ten different results. Why? Because in Kenya today, there is no clear road-map that is guiding our agriculture today for prosperous future development.

As for me, my answers to these questions are:

  1. I do not know, and
  2. I am not sure.

I know this sounds strange, but truly speaking that is how I feel even though I see myself as an agribusiness professional. This is not to mean that our government does not have documents that act as a strategic plan for agricultural development. No. Kenya does not have a shortage of such plans and research papers.

However, every now and then, strategic priorities change with the arrival of a new government or a new minister in the same government. Important to also note that in the last 4 years, the Ministry of Agriculture has been under three different ministers.

My responses simply portray that Kenya is suffering from a complete absence of long-term thinking for our agricultural development (20 years plan for example).

Strategic planning: Failing to plan is planning to fail

Actions taken by the government for agricultural development have been very inconsistent and short-lived, most of them only amounting to inputs handout to farmers.

The government has been silent on the most strategic issues that are badly needed to revolutionize our agriculture for good,  for example: development of a stable export market, value addition of coffee and tea, increased irrigation, expansion of cultivated land area, environment sensitive agriculture, conversion to high value crops, mechanization, increased strategic food reserves etc.

For example, Maize is Kenya’s number one staple food crop. If Kenya has plenty of maize, then Kenya is considered to be food secure. However, the government’s maize storage silos have a total capacity of 2,000,000 tons only. To fill in these silos, only half of the farmers are required countrywide. The rest are of the farmers are forced to sell their maize to local millers at throw away prices, or loose the whole produce due lack of proper storage facilities.

 It puzzles me how it has taken decades for the government increase the storage capacity of National silos, regardless of the fact that every year, smallholder farmers lose their produce due to lack of post-harvest facilities. Even this year, the same losses are expected.

Why does the government take forever to execute straightforward actions? Kenya produces around 4,000,000 tons of maize per years, majority of which is produced by smallholder farmers, of which most of it end up as a waste.

I my view, if the government would double the maize national grain reserves to take care of the entire national production, all maize farmers in this country would be a happy lot, and the millers would not have to spend a single cent to import maize that is grown 6000 kilometers away.

When it comes to bench-marking of agricultural development strategies, I never conclude without talking of Morocco’s experience. Between 2008 to 2020, Morocco implemented their agricultural development road-map up to 80% of the envisaged actions. Today, they have launched a new strategy to guide their agricultural development agenda between 2020 and 2030. And trust me, this new strategy dubbed “green generation” is the talk of the day by everyone in Morocco.

Everyone is talking about it, from the biggest commercial farmers to the marginalized peasants.

Everybody is simply aware of it, and eager to be part of its execution.

But in Kenya? Even a consultant like myself is not sure about the direction our agriculture is headed to.

Follow me on LinkedIn


  1. Thank you Wambugu sir for continuously enlightening us on matters of Kenya's agricultural sector. Keep up!

  2. I like this article. I was searching on the search engine and found your blog. I get more knowledge and I read a lot of interesting content here. keep doing it. Evaluate for grants


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Where to get Wambugu apples and how to grow them

The story of farming Wambugu apples in Kenya People like eating apples, but in Kenya, imported apples are very expensive and farmers are now looking for an alternative to grow apples locally, and the farming of Wambugu apples has excited many farmers in Kenya and abroad. In this article, we have gathered and reviewed some information from Wambugu Apple farm as well as from some farmers who have been growing the Wambugu apple variety in Kenya. Read also:  Dairy Goat farming with Wambugu Farmer It is said that an apple a day keeps a doctor away, but what if you could venture into the business of farming apples and keep poverty away? Think about it this way: A huge percentage of apples consumed in Kenya, almost 99% are imported from South Africa, the Middle East region, and the Mediterranean countries majorly Egypt. The price of one piece of apple fruit in Kenya goes for around $ 0.5. One kilogram of the imported apples go for up to 10 dollars. The price is very inhibitive especially th

Dairy Goat farming with Wambugu Farmer

Dairy goat farming step by step by Wambugu Farmer Dairy goat farming is an upcoming lucrative agribusiness venture, not only because of the huge prices that goat milk attracts but also because of the well-known health benefits of goat milk. My name is Wambugu Farmer, and I will take you through a few outlines that I have learnt about dairy goat farming during the past few years. I am not a direct dairy goat farmer, but my parents are. I visit them regularly and over the past five years that they have been practicing this farming, we have learnt a lot of lessons surrounding dairy goats that I am going to share with you in this article. Read also: Wambugu Apple Farm in Nyeri Kenya Watch Youtube Video:  WAMBUGU Apples Farm If you are looking forward to start dairy goats on a large scale or small scale farming, there will be something for you to learn from this article. My parents are small-scale dairy goat farmers doing around 6 goats at a time. They started this project because of th

How to make a kitchen garden in Kenya: Cone kitchen garden

  Simple steps to make a kitchen garden in Kenya This is an opportunity for every rural family to make a kitchen garden in Kenya. Just as the name indicates, a cone kitchen garden is a type of garden that resembles a cone, like that of an ice-cream holder. It consists of arranging soil in a conical shape above the ground to create more space for crop growing. Cone kitchen garden is efficient in that it allows for mixed cropping since different species of crop are grown on different layers. Materials and procedure of constructing a Cone kitchen garden in Kenya: Polythene sheet : It should be the heavy one, commonly called the dam-liner in local hardware. Alternatively, you can use old circular containers that have different circumferences in a manner that they can be concentric. Site identification : Chose a site that receives sufficient direct sunlight throughout the day and well drained. Mark the middle point of the garden site, and arrange the containers/polythene in layers, "