Sorghum and finger millet flour processing in Tanzania, Kenya, and Uganda, Socioeconomics Discussion Paper series 32

Schipmann-Schwarze, C and Orr, A and Mulinge, W and Mafuru, J (2015) Sorghum and finger millet flour processing in Tanzania, Kenya, and Uganda, Socioeconomics Discussion Paper series 32. [Socioeconomics Discussion Paper Series]

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We investigated the processing of sorghum and finger millet flour in Tanzania, Kenya, and Uganda. Fifty-three companies processing these crops were interviewed in 2011-2012. Except for Kenya, the processing sector was dominated by small- and medium-scale companies with 8- 10 employees and an annual demand of below 50 t per year. Annual demand was highest for finger millet in Kenya (600+ t). Most firms operated below capacity because of demand constraints, inconsistent supply of raw material, and fluctuating prices for grain. Procurement of grain was primarily through traders operating without formal contracts. Two-thirds of processors in Kenya and one-third of processors in Tanzania and Uganda had experience of sourcing directly from farmers; however, because of problems enforcing contracts and with transport, they preferred to buy from traders. The main buyers of flour from these processors were urban supermarkets and small retail shops. Most processors did not have formal contracts with buyers except in Uganda. Although 62 % of processors in Tanzania claimed they were satisfied with the quality of grain they purchased, only a minority of firms in Kenya (42 %) and Uganda (31%) were satisfied with grain quality. The most important quality requirements were cleanliness and grain colour (red or white). Over 70 % of processors were willing to pay a price premium for higher quality grain. Seasonal price fluctuations ranged from 30-48 % in Tanzania and Kenya but averaged only 18 % for finger millet in Uganda. Buying prices for grain in the high season ranged from 0.30 to 0.65 USD/kg for finger millet and from 0.30 to 0.42 USD/kg for sorghum. Wholesale prices for pure flour ranged from 1-1.13 USD/kg for both sorghum and millets, with slightly higher prices for lishe flour (1.30 USD/kg) and uji flour (1.31 USD/kg). The majority of companies reported increased demand for sorghum and millet flour in the past five years, and expected demand to grow in the future, particularly for finger millet flour.

Item Type: Socioeconomics Discussion Paper Series
Divisions: RP-Market Institutions and Policies
CRP: CGIAR Research Program on Policies, Institutions, and Markets (PIM)
Series Name: Socioeconomics Discussion Paper Series 32
Uncontrolled Keywords: Sorghum, millets, agri-business
Subjects: Mandate crops > Millets
Mandate crops > Sorghum
Depositing User: Mr B K Murthy
Date Deposited: 01 Apr 2015 10:44
Last Modified: 13 Jan 2016 10:40
Acknowledgement: UNSPECIFIED
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