Empowering Farmers through Knowledge

Kakuzi’s Bold Leap: Meeting the Surge in Edible Oil Demand Through Macadamia Expansion

In a dynamic response to the escalating global demand for edible oils, Kakuzi, a leading agri-business firm, has embarked on a strategic journey to significantly boost its macadamia production. The company’s recent success is underscored by a remarkable surge in macadamia production from 492 tonnes to an impressive 659 tonnes in 2022, as revealed in its fourth Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) report.

Capturing the Local Market:

Kakuzi’s visionary move to enhance macadamia production aligns seamlessly with the growing emphasis on localizing the production of essential commodities. The company is set to capitalize on the surging demand for macadamia oil, playing a pivotal role in the expansion of the local market for this highly sought-after commodity.

Strategic Initiatives and Achievements:

In the pursuit of excellence, Kakuzi faced challenges earlier in the year due to the global macadamia glut. However, the company swiftly responded with a series of strategic initiatives that included intensifying efforts in domestic market retail sales, launching a state-of-the-art macadamia oil processing facility, and introducing cold-pressed macadamia oil products. These efforts not only encouraged local consumption but also provided a compelling alternative to imported vegetable oils.

Chris Flowers, the Managing Director of Kakuzi, highlighted the company’s achievements, noting that by the end of 2022, the macadamia orchard had expanded to cover 1,129 hectares. Kakuzi exported 32,870 cartons (371,725 kg) to the United States, Europe, and Japan, while 900 roasted nuts were sold in the local market.

Commitment to Climate-Smart Agriculture:

Kakuzi’s commitment to sustainable practices is evident in its dedication to climate-smart agriculture, as emphasized in the ESG report. The company has invested significantly in initiatives that aim to mitigate the impact of drought on horticultural and macadamia nut operations.

Diversification and Global Success:

In a notable achievement, Kakuzi made history by becoming the first commercial exporter of African-grown avocados to China in 2022, shipping nine containers of quality export-grade avocados. This, along with other exports to Europe, resulted in a total of 527 avocado containers, weighing approximately 11.4 million kilograms during the year.

Knowledge Empowerment: The Avocado Academy:

Kakuzi’s commitment to excellence extends beyond its products to the establishment of the Avocado Academy. This innovative initiative is designed to empower farmers by providing them with enhanced knowledge in avocado cultivation. Through the academy, Kakuzi aims to contribute to the sustainable development of local communities.

A Call to Explore Carbon Market Opportunities:

Festus Ng’eno, the Permanent Secretary of the State Department for Environment and Climate Change, has challenged Kakuzi to explore carbon market opportunities. This exploration could pave the way for the company to engage in sustainable community projects, ultimately reducing poverty and fostering meaningful development.

Kakuzi’s bold expansion in macadamia production not only addresses the rising demand for edible oils but also exemplifies the company’s commitment to sustainability, innovation, and community development. As Kakuzi continues to make strides in the agricultural sector, it stands as a beacon of success and a model for responsible agri-business practices.

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