French Beans Farming Kenya

Have you ever considered starting the French bean’s business? Green beans are very common in very many parts of the world. Due to the high level of labour requirement, it is advisable to plant french beans on a small scale There are three main stages in farming this type of bean and this is germinating, flowering and harvesting French beans are the young fruits of the common beans.

After harvesting them, the green beans are consumed in their enclosed pods before the fruits in those pods have fully matured. The production of the french beans is carried out in warm areas in Kenya such as in places like Nyeri, Machakos, Naivasha, Embu and other counties. In Kenya, this type of crop is not mostly grown for local markets but it is exported to other countries.

However, for a french bean farming to be successful, you must consult the experts on how to farm and on getting the beans market. It includes getting the right information on what chemicals to use and the right species of the crop and how to pack the crops after harvesting.

If you are planning to start this farming, then you need to consider the cost of leasing the land, preparing it for planting, seeds fertilizer among others and this may amount to a total of Ksh.130,000. It is a value that may keep changing depending on the planting season. Below are some ways to improve the quality of your products and thus lowering the cost.

  • Use of irrigation method. The green beans require a lot of water and so improving the water use through the drip irrigation method ensures good quality products. However, the french beans plant is sensitive to waterlogged conditions
  • Appropriate seed variety. Different varieties need different conditions to grow. You should consult experts to know the variety that is most marketable and which to plant under the different seasons.
  • In this type of farming, the plants are at great risk of being affected by different diseases and pests. Using integrated pest management techniques ensures a great level of production.

 

                        Marketing

Most of the green beans market is in the European Union. The market is divided into two seasons, that is the low demand season and the high demand season. In the low demand season, there is a lot of supply from the farmers because of the long rain and thus there is a lot of stock leading to a low selling price. The Kenyan farmers export their products to the following countries.

  • The French market deals with selling the products at a wholesale level and they also deal directly with the growers of green beans to give them the information on how to pack their products.

In the high demand season, the Kenyan farmers benefit in a great way as the European Union farming is affected by the winter season. For your green beans to be marketable, you must ensure that you maintain a high level of hygiene and leave no residues of the chemical. Below are some challenges faced by the Kenyan french bean farmers

  • Diseases and pests affect many farmers products when they are poorly handled and controlled
  • Marketing regulations. French beans market has a set of standards to be followed and maintained by the farmers and failure to meet these set rules leads to the rejection of those particular farmers.
  • The Kenyan farmers are facing stiff competition from other markets in neighbouring countries such as Tanzania and Uganda.

      Profit Margin

How much you will expect from the sale of your green beans depends on the demand and supply season. When the demand is low, a kilogram of the french beans is sold at an average of ksh.50 and this means that the profit margin in this season will be low.

However, in high demand season, a kilogram of the green beans may be sold at an average of Ksh.100 per kilogram and this increases the profit margin. If you want a high margin, it is important to know the right season to do the farming.

      Weed control

You should first weed when the plant is two or three weeks old and you have to be very careful not to damage the fragile green beans plant. When the plant is flowering, the weeding process should not take place to avoid shedding of flowers.

       Harvesting

The French beans harvesting is done through picking the pod but not pulling it and it is done in the morning hours. To increase production, it is good to harvest the beans when they are still young.

        Packing

The packing is done according to the set standards of the market. The ones to be exported are packed in a variety of ways. Below are some of the packaging way according to how they are characterized.

  • Extra fine. It is a category of the beans that are mostly given a high prize by the French market. It is packed in loose bags or pr-packed in smaller bags according to the instructions.
  • Fine beans. It type of packing is where the beans are packed in loose bags but the bags must have its two ends cut off.
  • Pre-packed Once the beans are packed, they can be mixed with the other vegetables such as baby carrots to form a mixed pack.
  • Frozen beans. The frozen beans are grouped in a category known as fresh because they are ready to eat. Frozen beans are of a higher value.
  • Prepared pack. It is a category of more finished products compared to the pre-pack. The prepared pack is done by being pre-washed and is ready to eat.

 

To conclude, you don’t need to be a farmer to be in this business, but you can use this business as a side hustle to earn your income. If you want to join this business, you need to find a market, ask experts on the best variety of French beans to plant in your area and follow the market set standards.

 

 

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