Passion Fruit Farming in Kenya: The Costs and Expected Returns

Passion fruit, a climbing vine, is a versatile crop whose demand is growing in both export and domestic markets. It is the third most popular fruit in Kenya after mangoes and bananas respectively.

passion fruit farming in Kenya
Passion fruit farming in Kenya
The fruit can be eaten fresh or consumed after extracting the pulp and making juice. Passion fruit juice is a delicacy and is in high demand in the local markets. The juice is used in a variety of products and the pulp may be added to different dishes. A wide range of cosmetic products and food flavours are derived from the fruit that is rich in Vitamins A and C and carotene.

Due to the huge and expanding market and the changing consumer preferences as Kenyans move from carbonated soft drinks to fresh juices, the popularity of passion fruit farming in Kenya is set to rise high. Furthermore, brands like Coca-cola, Afia juices and Del-Monte are already sourcing various fruits from farmers or are in the process of doing in a bid to tap fresh fruits processing segments.

Despite all the interest by fresh drink processors, the supply of passion fruits is very low. A visit to various market centres in Nairobi, Kiambu, Eldoret, Kisumu, Mombasa and other towns reveals that fewer traders sell the crop compared to bananas or mangoes. This indicates that very few farmers have taken the crop seriously as a source of revenue. This situation presents a huge income potential for farmers who will tap into passion fruit farming.

Economic potential
Passion fruit farming can easily be started with little capital yet the financial returns can be more than previously thought possible.

Daily Data from the ministry of agriculture website indicates that the average price of One kilo of passion fruits is 50 shillings in various markets centres of the country; however, farmers can still sell at a higher price, with some recording as high as sh.150 per kilo for choice fruits sold for export.

It is possible to earn high, if the farmer does direct marketing that involves approaching restaurants, supermarkets and hotels that in most occasions buy one kilo for 100 shillings.

Furthermore, the maturing and ripening of the fruits, does not happen at the same time; some take 3 days others 1 week others 2 weeks. This is advantageous, as it allows the farmer to harvest weekly and have time to market their produce.

It has also been proven that passions are perennial plants; once planted, their lifespan is long, often exceeding 3 years; all these depends on how the plant is managed and fertilized.

One plant if carefully tended can grow vigorously to a length of over 6 meters after the first 4-5 months of transplanting yielding up to 2kg of fruit every week during the high season. 

passion fruit farming guide pdf
Passion fruit farming guide for Kenya
With a spacing of 2m by 3m, an acre would accommodate slightly more than 650 plants. Taking the lowest production of 1kg per week from each tree, an acre is able to give 650 kgs every week. We shall also take the lowest farm gate price possible which is Ksh60 for purple passion. That will earn you 39,000 per week for at least 6 months in a year. That will translate to Ksh 936,000 per year in Revenue. The cost of production per year is approximately ksh300,000: refer to the guide for breakdown. 

The cost of production and other relevant information is available in a comprehensive guide for passion fruit production in Kenya. You can now request for it from our Resources Page


Unknown said...

Am greatful with this information thank you

Ustadh Nuno said...

Thanks a lot.

Unknown said...

Enter your comment... informative, thanks

Anonymous said...

A great guide. How can one prevent falling of flowers?

Anonymous said...

How can one access the export market. From kirinyaga county

Anonymous said...

Great job continue educating us

Anonymous said...

Thank you for the information