Requesting partner(s):

Kenya School of Agriculture (KSA), Fresh Produce Exporters Association Kenya (FPEAK)

Consortium partner(s):

Egerton University, InHolland, Profyta


Agriculture and export in Kenya

The development and steady growth of Kenya’s horticulture sector in the past three decades is widely acknowledged as a success story. Kenya has become a major exporter of fresh produce to Europe and continues to tap into new markets in Russia and the Middle East.

Although there is a lot of potential for Kenya’s horticulture, the earnings dropped in 2022 by Sh32 billion in the first half of the year on the back of reduced returns from flowers, vegetables, and fruits. The value of export produce declined by 40 percent to Sh48.4 billion from Sh80.7 billion in the corresponding period in 2021. The value was pulled down by a decline in volume and lower quality avocado in the first quarter of 2022 as the exported products were not mature enough. This led to low value realized and more rejections of the produce in the world market. The volume of fruits dropped from 82.1 million kilograms to 44 million kilos in the review period. Earnings from flowers dropped from Sh53.2 billion last year to Sh37.3 billion in the half period under review, while fruits raked in Sh5.6 billion from Sh12 billion previously. Returns from vegetables fell by Sh10.1 billion to 5.4 billion. Stakeholders as farmers, traders and exporters lack up to date information and data regarding market trends, market demands and consumer preferences.

There have been increased concerns on food safety, sanitary and phytosanitary compliance worldwide and as a result, Kenya has received several notifications on non-compliance from export destinations such as the EU. In 2022, Kenya recorded 62 interceptions of export of fresh produce to the European Union market destinations of France, Netherland and Germany. The pesticide Acephate was one of the chemicals that is banned in EU but is still in use in Kenya. Traces of the chemical have been found in the beans and peas exported from Kenya hence the interception. One notification was coming from maximum residue levels (MRLs) in avocado. This also had impact on the total export volume.

The public institutions, educational institutes, NGO’s and private sector are lacking up to date knowledge and practical information in the field of the (EU)regulatory systems, risk management, market requirements and food safety standards. To prevent further losses and potential collapse of the sector, there is need to empower farmers, exporters but also inspectors of the Ministry of Agriculture & Livestock Development to meet EU standards and possess proper documentation, including traceability.

The involved organisations

The main requesting organization is the Kenya School of Agriculture (KSA) which is a tertiary agricultural training institution under the Ministry of Agriculture. It was established in 2011 and is registered and licensed by the Technical and Vocational Education Training Authority (TVETA) to offer Certificate and Diploma courses in General Agriculture. In addition, KSA is accredited by Curriculum Development, Assessment and Certification Council (CDACC) to provide Competency-Based Education and Training (CBET) in long and 15  tailor-made short courses in different agricultural value chains on continuous and modular-basis. The courses are fully based on needs of the labour market such as Value addition &  Agro Processing, Nursery establishment and Plant Propagation, Greenhouse Technology, Entrepreneurship & Agribusiness development, Climate Smart Agriculture (CSA), Gender mainstreaming in Agriculture, Integrated Pest Management (IPM), etc. Based on the needs in the market, KSA is developing new services and training courses in collaboration with (inter)national partners.

The consortium partner is Fresh Produce Exporters Association of Kenya (FPEAK). FPEAK is Kenya’s premier trade association representing growers, exporters and service providers in the horticulture industry. Formed in 1975, when export horticulture was in its infancy, the association has grown to become Kenya’s foremost sectoral trade association. Members of the association are involved in growing and/or exporting fresh cut-flowers, fruits, and vegetables. FPEAK provides a focal and coordination point for the horticulture export industry. Additionally, FPEAK supports growers and exporters by providing technical and marketing information and training, acts as an information centre, and runs active lobbying and advocacy programs to enhance the sector’s competitiveness. FPEAK has two levels of membership i.e. (a) Ordinary members who are involved in exporting business and (b) Affiliate members who offer services in the horticulture subsector. One of the key roles of any exporters association is to represent its members. The scope of stakeholders the association interacts with, and the number of events where this happens is extremely wide: ranging from government institutions to buyers, to members, and national and international events, some of them virtual. For each of these interactions, the objectives to be met by the association can be multiple: market access, competitiveness, lobbying, sharing information with members etc. FPEAK is looking for training providers to develop and offer additional training modules for its members.

Project goal & outputs

The project focuses on the following topics in the form of training weeks and (online) consultancy and support:

  1. Greenhouse management
  2. Post-Harvest Management
  3. Value addition fruit and vegetables
  4. Business, entrepreneurship and export marketing
  5. Food safety standards
  6. Quality control and inspection
  7. Flower quality and vase life
  8. Demonstration value addition for fruit and vegetables
  9. Demonstration food safety systems
  10. Online learning
  11. Workplace program

Relevant Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs):

  • Food and Nutrition Security (FNS);
  • Private Sector Development door middel van Public-Private Partnerships (PPP);

End hunger, achieving food security, and improving nutrition (SDG 2 Zero Hunger). The long-term goal is defined as follows: Ending all forms of malnutrition; Promoting agricultural growth; Ecologically sustainable food systems.

The following medium-term goal will contribute to this:

The education system (TVET/HE) is of good quality, relevant, and accessible (SDG 4); Partnerships between individuals and organizations are inclusive and sustainable (SDG 17).


Funded by the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs and managed by Nuffic, as part of the Orange Knowledge Programme, project number TMT+23-00034.

  • NUFFIC logo


July 2023 till august 2024

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