Climate Change Adaptation

In Kenya the effects of climate change have already been witnessed. In 2009 a drought in the Rift Valley led to a 30% drop in production. Smallholder farmers, which account for up to 60% of Kenyan tea, are particularly vulnerable to changing weather and growing conditions brought about by climate change.

About the project

We partnered with the German Development Agency GIZ  on behalf of BMZ* on a 3-year, €390,000 public-private partnership. The project originally focused on the training of 50,000 smallholder farmers supplying five Kenya Tea Development Agency (KTDA) factories to improve their farming practices and increase their resilience to the effects of climate change.

Mapping the areas that will be affected

At the start of the project climate modelling was used to show how the geography of tea producing regions would look by 2020 and 2050 (based on climate alone). Using this information we selected five KTDA factories and the smallholder farmers supplying them to work with.

How we helped

The project increased farmers’ resilience to climate change by providing training on good-practice farming and adaptation measures using KTDA’s training and support structures (lead farmers and farmer field schools/FFSs). A training manual on adaptation strategies was also produced for KTDA field workers and extension officers.

Measures included

  1. Training on soil, water, and bush management
  2. The use of composting, mulching, and shade trees
  3. Water harvesting, conservation, and drip irrigation
  4. Crop diversification and introduction of kitchen gardens
  5. Access to drought and frost resistant tea clones
  6. Fuel wood conservation and access to energy efficient stoves

Working with Marks and Spencers

After learning about the ETP/GIZ project leading UK retailer Marks and Spencers commissioned us to run the training for producers and farmers in their supply chains. This training helped a further +30,000 farmers respond to the challenges of climate change.

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