KARI Mtwapa Research Highlights 2005

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Kenya Agricultural Research Institute
Kenya Agricultural Research Institute - Mtwapa (KARI Mtwapa) is situated 20 km north of Mombasa in Kilifi district, in coastal lowland zone three (CL3, coconut-cassava zone). The mandate of the Centre is to address agricultural constraints in farming specific to the agro-ecological and socio-economic conditions of coastal lowland Kenya. The mandate districts of the Centre are: Mombasa, Kilifi, Kwale, Malindi, Lamu and South Tana River The six mandate districts cover about 66,368 km2 and have about 208,362 households and a human population of about 2.6m. The production figures indicate declining production for the major crops. Maize production declined from 592,000 bags in 2001 to 275,341 bags in 2004 while cassava decreased from 141,807 tons to 71, 529 tons for the same period. The maize yields range from one to eight bags ha-1 compared to the 40 bags potential with improved well managed varieties. Similarly coconut has shown a decreasing production trend from 67,301 tons in 1998 to 37,885 tons in 2004 (MoA). The production of cashew which has received a lot of attention from various stakeholders has increased from 7,576 tons in 2002 to 11, 323 tons in 2004. In 2004, the region had 1m cattle, 1m goats, 0.5m sheep, 2m indigenous chicken and 400,000 exotic chickens (MLFD, 2004). Milk production has increased in the last ten years from 30m litres (Staal and Mullins, 1996) to 63.9m litres in 2004 (MLFD, 2004). The Centre has a sub centre or testing site in all the mandate districts: Matuga (K wale), Msabaha (Malindi), Mariakani (Kilifi), Mpeketoni (Lamu), Bamba (Kilifi) and Ngao (Tana River) .