Of all the countries in the East and the Central African sub-regions, Kenya stands out as a huge business hub. It terms of GDP, the economy of Kenya is the largest in the region with $53.40 billion U.S., dollars. By available records, Kenya is one of the top 10 economies in the entire continent of Africa and available data on returns on investment show that there exist huge opportunities for small and medium-scale businesses involved with food processing in this East African country. Let us look at the Kenyan market in a bit more detail and how to set up a food processing business in Kenya!
The key drivers of the economy of Kenya
Agriculture and its allied services are at the centre of the wealth of Kenya. The country is reputed for its large cultivation of tea, coffee, grains, and fruits such as mangoes, pineapples, passion fruit, oranges, water melon, pawpaw, avocado, and banana. The dairy industry in Kenya is also evolving with huge potentials for discerning investors. Kenya boast of a large herd of exotic dairy cows which provide fresh milk for processing into branded pasteurised milk and other dairy products such as yoghurt, ice cream and sour milk products.
In addition, the sales of retail volume of yoghurt, sour milk products, cheese, and other dairy products have been recording steady growth in the last couple of years according to a research by euromonitor.com.
A look into the key opportunities for small-scale food processing investment in Kenya
Opportunities exists for small-scale investments in the food processing sector of the Kenyan economy in some key areas. These include: grain milling, sour milk production, ice cream and yogurt production, beer production, biscuit production, production of fruit drinks, manufacturing of packaged cheese, and sugarcane crushing. By population, Kenya is a nation of 47million people and of this number, 43%, 35% and 53.4% are children, youth, and working age population respectively. This demography and rising disposable incomes clearly show that Kenya is an entrenched place for the production and marketing of yogurt, fresh juice, and packaged cheese.
In addition, the raw materials for most of these small-scale food processing businesses are readily available and can be sourced locally in Kenya. For example, for ice cream production, the local raw materials in Kenya includes milk, eggs, butter, water, cream, flavours, and colour additives. And for biscuit production, the key ingredients include wheat flour, vegetable fat or other forms of edible oil like palm oil, and sugar. Other minor ingredients and chemicals for biscuit manufacturing could be sourced through importation with the help of food processing experts like Africa Processing.
How to set up a small-scale food processing business in Kenya
If you are thinking of setting up a food processing business in Kenya in any of the areas listed above, such is possible even if all you have is a low initial capital. Since Kenya offers a huge market for packaged food and fruit drinks, you stand to take a share of the market provided you have the right skills or expert advice from seasoned professionals such as Africa Processing. Africa Processing is a UK-based company with more than twenty years of proven competence and experience in several areas of food processing generally. Experts at Africa Processing are skilful and can make huge technical input into several areas of food processing such as the right recipes, equipment and the key functional blends required for manufacturing an assortment of quality food products.