I’m Salima, a window, mother and small-scale farmer from Kibwezi. There is a high potential for agribusiness in Kenya considering the good weather, fertile soils and high demand for horticultural products within the country. There is also an opportunity to export surplus produce to other countries. The skills I’ve accumulated over the years can help ensure high quality and sustainable production

Budget Breakdown (approx)

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Problem Statement

I’ve observed the challenges that orphans go through including inadequate access to food and shelter. My main goal for starting a farming project is to give back to society by creating a sustainable feeding program for orphans. The project will involve planting of watermelons in an irrigated farm in Kibwezi where I expect to produce approximately 90,000 Kilos of watermelon per season. The money raised from the sale of these watermelons can cater for the costs of feeding the orphans.

I have considerable experience working in the horticultural sector both as a producer and in the marketing of such produce. Experience helps ensure that production can be scheduled in a way maximizes chances of getting the best prices in the market or one can anticipate problems and take countermeasures before they cause irreversible damages. It also helps when dealing with brokers, because unlike a newbie farmer, someone with experience has the wherewithal to negotiate, wait or sell immediately taking advantage of prevailing market conditions.

Agriculture, and especially the horticulture sector has many challenges ranging from plant diseases, access to farms and markets since many farms are located away from urban centers I believe I can overcome all these challenges since I have good contacts and relations with other people involved in the sector. My cousin has given me a 2-acre farm in Mashinary, Kibwezi where I plan to establish the farming project

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Project Details

The Targeted Customers for the Produce
To achieve the goal I have of helping orphans, the products that I grow should fetch good prices in the market. I plan to achieve this by targeting chain supermarkets which not only have the capacity to buy in bulk but also pay good prices consistently since their regular customers have the purchasing power. I also plan to sell to distributors, wholesalers and retailers ensuring there is a ready market for the products I grow.

Value to Customers
Watermelons take 65 to 90 days to mature depending on the soil, availability of water, temperature and other prevailing factors. The weather and soils in Kibwezi are best suited to produce high quality Melon fruit throughout the year. The watermelon fruit has several health benefits including providing adequate hydration, relieving muscle soreness, preventing macular degeneration, improving digesting and helping fight severe illnesses.

Reaching and Acquiring Customers
With the funding obtained through MavenCORE, production will be steady allowing me to supply the buyers consistently, which is one way to acquire long-term clients. I will also do regular marketing to reach more potential customers, make timely deliveries and generally offer them the best products and services they can get in the market. Following the best farming practices such as use of drip irrigation, using organic manure and involving a professional agronomist will help ensure customers get the best products from the farm.

Revenue Generation
Selling the watermelons grown at the farm will be the main revenue generator with the proceeds expected to facilitate the feeding program for the orphans and also contribute some money to MavenCORE so that other projects can benefit too. An acre can produce approximately 45,000 Kgs of watermelons and each kilo goes for Ksh10 to 15, farm gate prices, which sums up to around Ksh450,000 an acre, so the two acres can generate up to 1 million in revenue per season. The expected profit margin is around Ksh300,000 to Ksh400,000 per acre each season.

The money generated from the sale of melons will cater for the costs of service to the children including purchase of food, paying for medical bills and also for the day-to-day costs such as salaries for the people who prepare meals for the children and generally take care of them. Part of the money generated from the farm will be given back to MavenCORE to help fund other projects in future. The project is expected to inject around Ksh200,000 into the MavenCORE funding project every year.

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  • Gichuki

    This is an awesome initiative and shall scale up with good management. There are national distribution companies like Twiga Foods who can also buy directly from your farm since they distribute melons to over 35,000 retail stores in Kenya and beyond. With MavenCore funding, the sky is the limit for you. There are hotel chains and restaurant chains in Kenya whose demand you may not satisfy…good stuff.

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