The survival of Kenya’s smallholder farmers, who predominantly rely on rainfed agricultural systems, is at stake as farmers are increasingly battling floods, droughts and heat stress at more frequent, intense and unpredictable rates. It has led to severe crop and livestock losses.
Peris Wanjiku, a smallholder farmer in Othaya, Nyeri County, which lies approximately 152 kilometres from Kenya’s capital, Nairobi, has watched as her fellow farmers have slowly started to sell off their land in the face of increasingly erratic weather patterns. She said that in a good year, a commercial crop farmer makes between $2,000 to $3,000 per acre from crops such as maize, wheat, tea and coffee. At the same time the price of land was quite high. The country’s average smallholder land size is approximately 1.2 acres.