AAA member highlight: Dryland Seed Ltd.
Dryland Seed Ltd (DSL) is a local seed company in Machakos County, Kenya producing and marketing improved seed varieties for farmers in low and medium altitude arid and semiarid lands (ASAL). Ngila Kimotho who is the Managing Director established the company in 2004. The seeds that are sold include four varieties of maize, three varieties of beans, two varieties of cowpeas, two varieties of pigeon peas, three varieties of sorghum and one variety of green grams. The seeds are developed in cooperation with Kenya Agricultural Research Institute (KARI) through a public-private partnership licensing agreement. All seeds are certified by the Kenya Plant Health Inspection Service (KEPHIS).
At the company’s warehouse, the seeds are taken through a process before they are fit for the market. They are first sorted so as to remove the bad seed. They go through a cleaning machine then finally graded. The male employees undertake this whole process. The women are then left with the task of weighing, packaging and sealing the bags which are then ready for the market.
DSL also runs a shop in town where the seeds are further packaged in smaller quantities to cater for farmers with small pieces of land. Mr Kimotho says he attributes the success of the business to diligence, patience and hard work. Partnerships have also played a key role in the growth of the business.
“Being a member of AAA has opened up my opportunities for business growth. I have been able to interact with members from Tanzania and Uganda whom we share ideas with, the different challenges we face and possible solutions.”
DSL distributes its seeds in Machakos, Makueni, Kitui, Embu, Nakuru and Kwale Counties and hopes to grow its market share through its range of products.