Agriculture and Food Security

Speeches Shim

Kenya has the largest, most diversified economy in East Africa with agriculture being the backbone and central to the country’s development strategy.  More than 75 percent of Kenyans make some part of their living in agriculture, and the sector accounts for more than a fourth of Kenya’s gross domestic product (GDP).  However, agricultural productivity has gradually stagnated in recent years, despite continuous population growth.  Moreover, only about 20 percent of Kenyan land is suitable for farming and in these areas maximum yields have not been achieved, leaving considerable potential for increases in productivity. 

Many farmers work without basic agricultural inputs or updated technology and lack adequate financial or extension services.  Recurrent crises such as drought in Kenya’s arid and semi-arid areas (ASALs) have exacerbated the vulnerability of basic livelihoods.  This has posed critical challenges to food security and for over two million Kenyans who receive food aid annually.  USAID is focused on improving the overall competitiveness of Kenya’s agriculture sector through activities that increase productivity and incomes for smallholder farmers; improving access to clean water and energy; increasing access to affordable financing; and building more resilient communities that can move out of humanitarian assistance and into development.

Issuing Country 
Tuesday, February 23, 2021 - 9:30am

Last updated: February 23, 2021