About 8,500 farmers in Nakuru County have benefited from 142,640 seedlings of avocado worth Ksh. 42 million with a total acreage of 1900.
CECM Agriculture, Dr. Immaculate Maina, said the county aims at being the leading producer of avocado come year 2021.
Dr. Maina was speaking during the Nakuru Farmers Day where she represented Governor Lee Kinyanjui and confirmed that new markets are now opening for Kenyan avocados with China as a major importer.
She said the county has set aside 25 million this financial year to source for more seedlings to promote diversification in the sector.
Currently, the county has 80 certified registered nurseries.
Ernest Muthomi, CEO Avocado Society of Kenya, said they were ready to work with the county by providing rigorous trainings and market for farmers.
Dr. Maina said the County Government is working to register more nursery operators within the county.
In addition to that, she urged nursery operators to get certifications from KEPHIS and AFA to provide clean seedlings to farmers.
Farmers were also advised to source for clean planting material to avoid losses especially when there are disease and pest outbreaks.
Avocados have grown to represent 17% of Kenya’s total horticultural exports and are now estimated to be the 4th most important national fruit crop with over 70% of avocados grown by smallholder farmers.