Photo by Siert Wiersema, CDI

Project

Enhancing the capacity of H-PTC to produce high quality graduates to manage and improve productivity of the potato value chain

This project enhances the capacity of H-PTC to produce high quality graduates to manage and improve productivity of value chain in Kenya.

Aim

This project aims at information management and sharing, and delivering graduates, who can contribute effectively to increased productivity of the potato value chain in Kenya.

To achieve this, the project will address the institutional, organisational, technical and training capacity of H-PTC;

  • Curricula and short courses in potato have to be developed, implemented and aligned with labour market needs.
  • Entrepreneurial and gender skills have to be integrated in the education programmes at all levels.
  • Knowledge sharing has to be institutionalised.
  • An on-site and a mobile training unit has to be established.

There are no specialised training programmes on potatoes in Kenya. This has led to an acute shortage of personnel with practical skills in the potato sub-sector in areas such as commercialisation, value addition, and quality standards. This in turn negatively affects potato development in Kenya, and consequently the sub-sector’s capacity to contribute effectively to food security, and poverty alleviation.

Potato is the second most important food crop in Kenya after maize, the main staple crop. It therefore plays an important role in food security. It is the largest single item in tonnage of fresh produce in Kenya, accounting for about 900,000 MT production. The potato sector is however underdeveloped and low productivity is attributed to use of poor quality seed potato and poor agronomic practices. Farmers lack skills to implement good agricultural practises necessary to maximise potato production and maintain high quality of the crop during and after harvesting.

Potato production is undertaken mainly by women. It is therefore important that graduates trained for the potato sub-sector contribute to empowerment of women.