Sources say China-Kenya bilateral cooperation in strategic fields such as agriculture and infrastructure development is flourishing and Kenyan potato farmers are confident of some benefits flowing their way. China is both an economic and technological powerhouse, whose partnership with the Kenyan government could help transform potato farming through technology adoption and enhanced market linkages.

Also, through a partnership with China, Kenya could be better placed to develop genetically modified potato varieties that are disease-, pest- and drought-resistant. Kenyan smallholder potato farmers were also keen on adopting best practices on value addition from China, in their quest to boost exports to overseas and more lucrative markets, according to Kamau.

Statistics from the Kenyan Ministry of Agriculture indicate that potato is the country’s second most important staple crop after maize, grown on about 128,000 hectares per year with average yields of eight tons per hectare.


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