From crops to livestock, there are various agribusinesses that the youth can engage in for good income. But the biggest challenge for many budding entrepreneurs is usually how to isolate one from the other.
In the crops sector, the low hanging fruits for many youths are crops like bananas, passion fruits, maize, potatoes, tomatoes and vegetables.
In livestock, the most popular are dairy cows and goats, sheep and goats, rabbits, pigs and poultry.
And in aquaculture, one can keep tilapia, catfish, trout or common carp. These agribusinesses can be done at both the producer or processor level.
To select the best agribusiness, start by identifying the areas that you can engage in as you list the strengths and opportunities that you havein each. This will further depend on whetheryou are doing the agribusiness as individual or a group.
Some of the things to consider before selecting an agribusiness include the sector itself, for instance dairy or fish, market demand of the products, ability to value add,capital needed,expected income and labour, among others.
For a group in Nakuru or Uasin Gishu for instance, dairy farming may be one of the ventures to consider due to ready market, availability of milk in case of value addition, ready pasture and favourable climate.
When it comes to investment, dairy goats may require less land and initial capital than cows. Similarly, keeping fish may not be as labour intensive as running a dairy enterprise.
One mistake that many agro-preneurs make when considering the business to engage in is prioritising expected income at the expense of market demand and value addition. Consider all factors, however, small before making the final decision.
It is not hard to know if a business is viable. For instance, in Uasin Gishu, you will find maize in plenty while in Nyandarua potatoes or beef. In others like Nakuru, you may find eggs and broiler meat production in excess production.
Thus, anyone or group seeking to enter into value addition would naturally choose to locate their businesses where the raw materials are available.
Now, once you identify the business to engage in, the next logical step is usually to scrutinize the factors so that you understand the ones that are most limiting.
For instance, in the dairy value chain, some of the most limiting factors can be high cost of investment, huge land demand and tough market due to increased competition.
Lastly, once you pick an agribusiness, talk to an expert to guide you through the actual steps of starting the business.
Across the country, several youths have benefitted from Vijabiz project, an initiative aimed at enabling youth venture into successful agribusiness.
The project was funded and implemented by the Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA), USTADI Foundation (Kenya) and International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD). It has enabled several youths to engage in dairy, fish and cereals agribusiness value chains.