Urban-Based Agriculture and Poultry Production: The Case of Kisumu and Thika in Kenya

Forskningsoutput: AvhandlingDoktorsavhandling (sammanläggning)


Kenya’s population is rapidly growing and urbanising. Poverty and problems of food insecurity are equally urbanising at an unprecedented rate. Formal employment has not kept pace with the job demand of the growing population. As a result, urban residents seek employment (livelihood) from an array of informal economic activities, including own food production. The growing urban population and urbanisation creates a demand for food, some of which are grown in urban areas. Despite its importance, there has been no recent studies to document and analyse own food production in the medium-sized cities of Kenya, which have the largest share of population, are the majority, and still have relatively more available land than the bigger cities.
Thus, the purpose of this study is to contribute to our understanding of the development of urban agriculture in medium-sized cities in Kenya by analysing the role of own food production on households’ food security. This was achieved through three specific objectives; to provide a theoretical framework of why urbanites engage in farming; to analyse the operation of the urban poultry value chain; and to investigate the profitability of indigenous chicken production in urban areas of Thika and Kisumu, Kenya. Using data from these two cities, and a mixed-methods approach of combining quantitative and qualitative methods, the aforementioned objectives were addressed in three journal articles.
Findings indicate that more than half of urban households in the two cities studied engage in some form of agriculture in urban or rural areas. One out of four households practises urban agriculture while 37 per cent practise agriculture in rural areas. For households engaged in urban agriculture, 36 per cent of their income derives from agriculture. Households practising agriculture in rural areas derive 39 per cent of their income from agriculture. Findings from this study also demonstrate that urban agriculture contributes to household food security through two pathways; through direct consumption of produces and indirectly through income. Own production of food items such as vegetables and eggs provide nutritious food to the farming households. Additionally, income derived from sale of own produced agricultural commodities could be used to purchase other food items not produced by the household.
Three fifths of the urban farmers practise poultry production. Poultry production in the two cities is dominated by indigenous chicken production, with a significant share of households producing broiler, layer, and ducks. Indigenous chicken provides both food and income to the households. Broiler and layer production are predominantly for income generation. The poultry value chain is characterised by spot market exchanges, with many buyers and uncoordinated activities. Poultry theft, especially in informal settlements, slaughtering of chicken without inspection by meat inspectors, non-adherence to drugs withdrawal period, and manufacturing and sale of substandard poultry feed are some of the illegalities in the urban poultry value chain. Indigenous chicken production is a profitable venture with a gross margin of Ksh. 756 per bird (1USD was equivalent to Ksh. 100 at the time of survey). Access to high value markets, market information, production system, and a farm’s location within a cluster of related industries are important determinants of profitability.
The study identifies several potential points of entry for county governments and authorities to support urban poultry farmers. For example through encouraging and assisting farmers to form producer groups that would improve their accessibility to high value markets. Another entry point for the county governments is enhancing farmers’ knowledge on poultry production and disease management as an avenue of improving their position and upgrading in the value chain. Furthermore, to reduce potential health risks, County governments could enforce the meat control act’s regulation to ensure that all poultry meat intended for sale is inspected by county meat inspectors. The Kenya Bureau of Standards should ensure that only certified companies produce livestock feed to ensure quality of feed.


  • Samuel Omondi
Enheter & grupper

Ämnesklassifikation (UKÄ) – OBLIGATORISK

  • Kulturgeografi


Tilldelande institution
Handledare/Biträdande handledare
  • Magnus Jirström, handledare
  • Yahia Mahmoud, Biträdande handledare
  • Willis, Oluoch‐Kosura, Biträdande handledare, Extern person
  • Otieno, David Jakinda , Biträdande handledare, Extern person
Sponsorer för avhandling
  • Swedish Research Council
  • Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA)
Tilldelningsdatum2018 dec 6
  • Lund University
Tryckta ISBN978-91-7753-872-1
Elektroniska ISBN978-91-7753-873-8
StatusPublished - 2018 okt 22

Bibliografisk information

Defence details Date: 2018-12-06 Time: 11:00 Place: Room 100 "Världen", Geocentrum I, Sölvegatan 12, Lund External reviewer(s) Name: Rich, Karl M. Title: Dr Affiliation: International Livestock Research Institute ---


Ingen tillgänglig data