Inside Kenya’s plans to take the fight for its beef industry to the world market in 2020

The Kenya Meat Commission (KMC)
  • To this end, the ministry of livestock is proposing the formation of a marketing board dubbed the Livestock Products Marketing Board (LPMB).
  • The board will among other things promote the trade of livestock and livestock products, including signing of trade agreements on behalf of the government.
  • Currently, Kenyan products are off the menu in many homes due to the high cost of production locally.

Kenya is planning to take the fight for Kenyan livestock products to the world market in 2020 and ensure Kenyan beef is on everyone’s table.

To this end, the ministry of livestock is proposing the formation of a marketing board - Livestock Products Marketing Board (LPMB) - that will oversee promotion of Kenya’s products across the world.

Livestock Principal Secretary Harry Kimtai says the board will be instrumental in ensuring that animal products from Kenya will favorably compete with those from other countries, based on meeting required standards.

“This new body will ensure that the marketed products adhere to international standards as we seek to promote the sale of our livestock products beyond our traditional markets,” said Mr Kimtai, Business Daily reported.

Kenya has a thriving livestock industry, which is one of the largest and most developed in the Sub-Saharan Africa. The livestock sub-sector contributes about 10% directly to the overall GDP, according to the Kenya Agricultural & Livestock Research Organization (Kalro).

Livestock Products Marketing Board, which has been proposed in the Livestock Bill 2019, will among other things promote the trade of livestock and livestock products, including signing of trade agreements on behalf of the government.

It will also facilitate the marketing of products through provision of market information intelligence on supply and demand locally and internationally.

Currently, Kenyan products are off the menu in many homes due to the high cost of production locally that has made Kenyan products especially dairy products not competitive in the world market.

Kenyan processors, for instance, are at the moment stuck with over Sh2 billion ($20 million) worth of long-life products that they cannot sell to international market because of higher prices that they need to sell them at in order to break even.

So bad is the situation that the country currently relies heavily on Uganda and Tanzania as key major markets to supply the produce.

UN agency Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) estimates that by 2050 the cattle population in Kenya will have increased by 90 percent while milk and beef production will rise to 17,000 tonnes and 2,000 tonnes, respectively.

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