KVDA opens new outlet at Nairobi’s Eastleigh to boost honey export and spur livelihoods in ASALs

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By Zablon Oyugi, March 12, 2024, Kerio Valley Development Authority (KVDA) yesterday opened a new shop at Business Bay Square (BBS) Mall in Eastleigh area, Nairobi in a bid to boost honey export and spur livelihoods of communities in Arid and Semi-Arid Lands (ASALs).

According to the authority’s statement on X (formally known as Twitter), the outlet will increase uptake of honey by selling 3 tonnes of the sweetener every month.

“Currently, we export 60 tonnes of honey to the United States markets targeting to access more markets within the East Africa Community (EAC) region of which the Ministry of EAC, ASALs & Regional Development Kenya will act as a gateway to access the EAC markets,” said KVDA

The outlet opening ceremony was preceded over by Penina Malonza, the Cabinet Secretary at the Ministry of EAC, ASALs & Regional Development Kenya.

KVDA will next week ship five tonnes of honey to the United States as it targets 300,000 kilos by next year. This is besides targeting market in Somalia, which was recently incorporated into EAC.

While speaking at the event, Malonza commended the agency for its efforts in empowering local communities through the enhancement of value addition.

“KVDA is transforming lives with its honey project, building on the success of the mango project implemented a few years ago. The proceeds from honey sales directly contribute to improving the livelihoods of communities in the arid and semi-arid region of Kerio Valley,” said the CS.

Sammy Naporos, the Managing Director of KVDA, emphasized the organization’s primary goal of advancing development to enhance the region’s per capita income. This is achieved through initiatives such as the honey and mango projects, as well as an upcoming project focusing on drought-resistant grass.

“Kerio Valley Pure Natural Acacia Honey stands as a leading brand in the market. The Authority is actively broadening its customer base by making these products more accessible to the community. Our aim is to encourage local communities to engage in beekeeping for economic transformation in our region, moving away from traditional cattle keeping, which has historically led to conflicts,” said Naporos.

He added that the Authority aims to increase its annual honey processing output to 300 tonnes.

Kamukunji Member of Parliament (MP), Yusuf Hassan also thanked KVDA for selecting Eastleigh which is in his constituency as the premier location for their flagship store.

“This strategic decision resonates deeply as the Eastleigh business hub has emerged as a pivotal nucleus propelling Kenya’s economic vitality and overall development trajectory,” said the MP.

KVDA is a Regional Development Authority in Kenya, established by an Act of Parliament mandated to initiate, plan and develop resources along the Kerio Valley.

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