The GOALAN Project Trained 146 Kenyan Farmers on Sustainable Production and Consumption Practices

The lake Naivasha basin in Kenya acts as a lifeline for many local communities; yet it faces serious challenges, including unsustainable agriculture and land use as well as woodland destruction. Such practices threaten the basin’s ecosystems, reduce the quality and quantity of water, and endanger its ability to sustain livelihoods.

Our GOALAN project, which ran from January 2018 to December 2022, aimed at making the horticultural sector in the Lake Naivasha Basin more profitable for micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) through sustainable consumption and production (SCP). The project fostered the uptake of SCP practices and sustainable farming techniques which increased the farmers’ yields and incomes. Further, it promoted the production of food that is safe for human consumption while also taking care of the environment.

Trainings and capacity building

The GOALAN project trained 146 smallholder farmers in the basin on climate smart and sustainable farming practices, integrated pest management, record keeping, enterprise farming, financial credit access, market linkages, and post-harvest management. The MSMEs have been trained on efficient water use, soil and water conservation, agroforestry, the use of certified seeds, optimal use of organic fertilizers, post-harvest handling, social welfare and more. To ensure that knowledge is passed on to other MSMEs beyond the project cycle, the GOALAN project has created a pool of ‘change agents’ through a Trainer of Trainer (ToT) programme.

Creating networks

GOALAN has also strengthened the entrepreneurial and marketing skills of MSMEs and connected them to predictable and reliable markets, thereby increasing their income and reducing food waste caused by post-harvest losses. The project has linked the farmers with local and international markets and established a solar-powered retail shop close to the Naivasha highway in Kenya, where the farmers can now sell their sustainable produce. Through a farmer group formed within the framework of the project, the MSMEs have signed contracts with various hotels, processing companies, and fresh fruit and vegetable export companies for the supply of sustainable produce. The project also conducted a local and international market analysis that gave the MSMEs a deeper insight into their target markets.

Facilitating access to finance

The project also supported MSMEs with financial management and business planning skills in order to better negotiate and develop green business plans for financing. Additionally, the MSMEs have been linked to microfinance institutions and commercial banks to enable them to access finance.

Sustainable horticulture certification

The 146 farmers trained under the GOALAN project came together, forming the Lake Naivasha Basin Sustainable Horticultural Farmers group. This group underwent rigorous food safety production training and made history in 2022 as the first farmers’ group in Kenya to be awarded the Kenya Standard (KS) 1758 certification. The certification is a code of practice for the horticulture industry and a Kenyan Ministry of Agriculture standard of quality for food safety. This will enable MSMEs to access additional markets.

MSMEs run by youth and women were supported with equipment, including a greenhouse, certified seeds, a water tank, drip irrigation kits and a solar-powered water pump to further boost their uptake of SCP practices and increase their resilience.

The project has also created awareness among public institutions and authorities and facilitated dialogue among key stakeholders from both the public and private sectors to promote green horticultural products and green public procurement practices in the country.

To learn more about the project activities and outcomes, please check out the GOALAN project infographic.

The GOALAN project was funded by the EU SWITCH Asia Programme and implemented by the CSCP and WWF Kenya.

For further questions, please contact Kartika Anggraeni.