Beans are an important food crop not only in Kenya but across the globe.
The popularity of bean farming in Kenya is may be a result of the numerous bean recipes that are highly consumed by Kenyan families. The cereal goes with practically every other meal and is also a rich source of protein.
Kenyans depend on beans a lot for their source of protein. Apart from the huge export market for dry beans, there is enough local market for beans as well. The prices in most cases range between 6,000 shillings to 12,000 shillings per 90-kilogram bag depending on the type of beans and the season.
Particularly, beans fetch better prices when it is not harvesting period. Some varieties are also more expensive than others.
Before venturing into beans farming, it is advisable to look at the most common different varieties available to help one understand which to choose for their area based on performance. These varieties include; Rosecoco beans Kenya Mwezi moja beans and Mwitemania beans.
Rosecoco is one of the commercially available bean varieties in Kenya. It is highly popular with farmers and has been around East Africa for many years. It is a brown and cream-coloured seed with red spots. While many farmers prefer this variety, it has very little tolerance to root and foliar fungal diseases.
The Rosecoco and kidney beans, for instance, are a bit pricey compared to the other varieties which are available in large quantities. Beans with a high supply across the country will fetch a lower price compared to those that thrive in specific areas. Regardless of the type, the market for beans is readily available.
Beans tend to do very well in mid-altitude, arid and semi-arid areas of Kenya. Yields of up to 10 bags per acre can be obtained but this can be hindered by low rainfall, poor crop management, low fertility, high bean fly incidence and use of inappropriate seed variety. Good quality seeds of the appropriate variety should always be used for high yields
Like most other agricultural products, prices for beans fluctuate depending on the market conditions. The crop will tend to be expensive when they are in high demand, which is often around planting time when farmers need seeds for planting, and also during periods with no new crops.
The cost per bag depends on the region that one is selling or buying from. Different areas in Kenya register varying prices of beans. Averagely, beans prices in Kenya range from 6,000 shillings to 12,000 shillings in major towns of Kenya from low to high seasons.
The best thing to do when scouting for better rates is to check the indices often provided by trading companies and the government on the prices of beans in major towns including Eldoret, Nakuru, Kisumu, Nairobi, and Mombasa.
Different towns across Kenya register different prices for the same variety of beans due to different factors that play out when determining the prices