The Kenya Meat Commission (KMC) is banking on modernization of its two abattoirs in Athi River and Mombasa as well as securing licenses in new markets to increase its capacity to buy more livestock from farmers.
Modernization of the two plants that is ongoing is expected to be completed within four years.
So far, KMC has secured an export license from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and is targeting the Chinese market.
In the Horn of Africa region, it is estimated that 75% of livestock death is caused by dry weather patterns that suppress growth of pasture as well as challenges in accessing drinking water.
Currently, livestock keepers in Kajiado County have already begun selling their animals at throw away prices as dry weather patterns persist to save them from further losses.
This is a cycle that is well too familiar for those living in Arid and Semi-Arid areas.
Since the government revived KMC twelve years ago, the processor has expanded capacity to 2,500 large livestock and 4,000 small stock. However, not all this capacity is being utilized.
This year, through the Kenya Livestock Insurance Programme, the government released Ksh 215m payout for livestock keepers in Isiolo, Tana River, Mandera, Wajir, Turkana and Marsabit who suffered losses due to harsh weather patterns.
Currently, Kenya Meat Commission sells at least 85 percent of its products in the local market, mainly public institutions.