October 9, 2017. Nairobi, Kenya.When one mentions farming while in Kieni Constituency in Nyeri County the name Daniel Gakuo will not miss in the conversation. Daniel is a ‘farming sensation’ not only for his success in onion farming but also for his agro-mentorship and onion farming expertise.
Staring out with one acre a few years ago, Daniel has seen his passion for farming expand to more than 15 acres. Daniel’s story is a pure indication that small-scale farmers can move from subsistence farming into agribusiness.
You could ask, how is this possible?
Daniel will openly let you in on the secret.
” Success is in the details. We must understand the important role of modern farming practices; choose the right seeds, correct application of chemicals & fertilizers, working with agro-experts, being eager to learn and exchanging notes with fellow farmers.”
Through decades of partnerships with Kenya’s large and small-scale growers, Amiran has become a ‘one stop shop’ for most agricultural needs. While playing a significant role in the floriculture and cereal industry in Kenya, Amiran has remained focused on the needs of small scale growers.
The company seeks to encourage growth of small-scale farming by;
Born from the school of thought that ‘Learning is an everyday process’, Amiran believes that it is important for farmers to continually indulge themselves in new trends in the field of agriculture, learn about how to deal with new pests and diseases in addition to the best seed varieties suited for their geographical area.
Amiran trainings and field days have brought knowledge, new farming techniques and modern agro-inputs to the farmer’s doorstep.
The interaction with stockists and farmers also offers Amiran agronomists an opportunity to engage with farmers and learn more about what they require. This helps to ensure that Amiran products and services are customized to the farmer’s needs.
Being smart amidst unpredictable weather patterns
The unpredictable weather patterns calls for farmers to practice climate-smart agriculture such as the use of drip irrigation systems that allows one to grow healthy crops in and out of season and regardless of the changing weather conditions.
Drip divides the water to all plants equally and enables control over accurate amounts of water that irrigate the plant which result to even crops and higher yields.
Drip is also used for fertigation as soluble fertilizers are added to the irrigation water and dispersed equally among the plants through the drip lines. Introducing fertilizer through the drip pipes ensures full utilization of the fertilizer properties as it is not washed away after being applied in large quantities
There are also crop protection benefits to using drip irrigation. Most fungal diseases thrive in moist environments that are created by sprinkler irrigation. Drip is applied underneath the plant’s foliage which preserves dry surroundings. In addition, pesticides are not washed off the plants which ideally should be left on the leaves for as long as possible to prolong their effect.
The Beginning of a Plant’s Life
Seeds represent the beginning of life of a plant and its quality plays a crucial determining factor on yield and quality of the crop’s production.
Superior genetic material enables the hybrid varieties to have excellent diseases resistances which make it possible for farmers to produce healthy crops in times when Open Pollinated Varieties (OPVs) pose a challenge. With the F-1 seeds, the post harvest losses usually incurred by the farmers are drastically reduced due to the high fruit keeping quality that also ensures the produce reaches the Market place in the desirable state.
In addition, early maturity of the Amiran hybrid varieties reduces farm operational costs hence increasing the farmer’s net revenue. The adaptability to variable climatic conditions makes the hybrids suitable across a wide section. Most hybrids can be cultivated throughout the year irrespective of the season.
High quality seedlings are now a call away
Farmers lose a lot of seedlings during the nursery stage. Courtesy of Amiran’s partnership with Plantech, this is now a thing of the past. Farmers can get high quality fully germinated seedlings delivered right at their doorstep.
Chemicals and Fertilizer customized for the needs of the farmer
For years, Amiran has remained focused on the making the small farmer more profitable by reducing the risks brought about by weeds, pest and diseases.
The company has sort partnerships with world renowned manufactures in the field of Chemicals and Fertilizers. With the small-scale farmer at heart these partnerships have brought to Kenyan farms high quality products that make farming enjoyable and less tedious.
The field-proven products have been repackaged to suit the pockets of the farmers.
With every emerging challenge in weed control or pest management such as the destructive army worm, Amiran’s team of agronomists research and provide solutions that contain a unique mode of action that is effective and improve yields at a pocket friendly price.