The demand for chicken meat is enormous in Kenya. The consumers are turning to chicken, partly because the fast food industry is growing rapidly, partly because cooking habits at home are changing.
That’s why Jennifer Wairimu Njhia has such a brilliant smile on her face. She knows that her business is a lasting one with a bright future .
Jennifer has a chicken farm on the outskirts of Nairobi, where she proudly shows me around with husband Patrick Kanyagia on tow. He on his part is so proud of her and her achievements that he keeps interrupting her all the time.
But I get the picture: They can easily sell all their chickens and more.
Jennifer started out on a small scale and on her own savings with as few as 25 chickens . That was in a residential part of town, and as she wanted to expand they had to move the farm and rent a small piece of land.
Soon came the time when she needed funding, and recently Jennifer and Patrick were approved by GrowthAfrica , and they got a loan of Ksh 288.000.
Today the shed has room for a total of 1600 chickens, but they want to build another one to double the production and also to put in some much needed ventilation to improve the conditions.
At some point Patrick points his finger straight up in the air and says: – I spent 30 years up there! I don’t get the picture. Up where? In a tree? Was he with Good for all that time and came back? It turns out that the answer is much simpler. Patrick was an airline pilot with Kenya Airways, now he has retired with a good pension allowing him and his wife a comfortable life. So why the chicken farm? – Because we love it, says Patrick, and the potential is so big. I’ll tell you what our dream is: One day we’ll cater to none less than KFC, Kentucky Fried Chicken! And that’s just the beginning, the next step is pigs. Pigs are on the rise in this country. Come back in a year, and we’ll have pigs too, he says.
I’m not sure I’ll be lucky enough to be back in a year, but having seen their enthusiasm I’m sure Patrick is right. There will be pigs.