**by Bonventure M Makhaya, TAHMO Kenya Intern
Agribusiness is emerging to be the next income-generating sector whose potential is yet to be exploited fully. The wider public perceives agriculture as ‘just farming’, just raising livestock and growing crops. For most farmers in the Kiambaa constituency in Kiambu County, it’s a different narrative. For one James Muuga from Kamuguga village, it’s a treasure chest.
He describes Agribusiness as the farming, management, production, and marketing of agricultural commodities. He pays much attention to the ever-changing weather. In his own words; there is no proper farming without paying attention to underlying factors that may affect the end product. Mr. Muuga is a full-time farmer and he is very passionate about it, from poultry, cattle keeping, and Pig rearing to kale cultivation. He believes weather plays a major role in the amount of milk produced, egg production, to prices of processed and unprocessed feeds. He, however, feels there exists a gap when it comes to the dissemination of weather information. Asked about how he manages to sell all his produce, he points out Masoko as the platform he currently engages with though he has sold his produce to Twiga Foods Kenya in the past. One lesson I learn is, in the 21st century smart farming is the way to go and technology is inevitable.
I paid a visit to Mr. Gabriel Kihara in charge of research at the National Environmental Trust Fund (Net Fund) to get his views on the same. He starts by highlighting the achievements the entity has made. With over 4000 farmers under their watch and funding, they have no regrets whatsoever. He however is quick to point out that the channels used to disseminate weather information are not that efficient. He believes Weather and Agriculture are entwined and they are very open to discussion and further engagements with TAHMO. After the interactive sessions, these two questions kept crossing my mind. What is in Agribusiness for me? Which opportunities are in Agro-meteorology yet to be exploited and how can we improve the dissemination of weather information?