The Avocado tree was just another tree offering shade, fruit for domestic consumption and some little commercial benefits if at all in Muranga until 2013.
The county government of Murang’a through the leadership of Mwangi Wa Iria focused on the avocado tree and turned the shade tree into a thriving business.
Governor Mwangi Wa Iria realised the potential the avocado fruit had and invested in the fruit by securing good and viable markets for the avocados . The governor then organised all the avocado farmers into cooperatives as per their regions and sourced for contractual buyers for the fruit locking out all brokers who took advantage of the farmers by buying the fruits at sh1.
The price of avocado shot from sh1 to sh12 per fruit.
The governor then started avocado trees population program where he has been giving 1,000,000 avocado seedlings annually to farmers for free since 2014.
This is a simple program where willing farmers register for the trees and every season more than 250,000 farmers benefit from this programme. Each farmer receives two seedlings for free.
A total of 5 million avocado trees have been planted in 5 years.
Avocado trees take 3 years to mature and each tree produces on average a 1000 fruits annually.
With a ready market and quality fruit production, the avocado farmers in Muranga earn sh2.5 billion annually.
With the current demand for the avocado fruit and the initiatives the county government has put around the avocado farming , the benefits can only get better for the farmers.