Purity T Naisho – a passion for horticulture
In 2005, I, Purity Naisho founded a horticultural export company. At that time, I had worked for 10 years for a major Kenyan producer of fruit and vegetables, as general manager in charge of marketing and operations, and had a growing desire to stand on my own feet. I joined the horticultural industry by default – it was the first job that came my way after college, but I don’t think I could work anywhere else, because I’ve developed a passion for this industry.”
So I chose to invest in this sector. Our company – Interveg Exports Ltd – began operations with one French buyer, and very quickly our customers have extended to other countries in Europe, namely Germany, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, and Switzerland as well as the Scandinavian countries.
A primary factor in the growth and success was the will to meet buyers’ expectations in terms of quality and compliance. This goal was achieved with a bit of a boost from European cooperation, through COLEACP and its PIP program, funded by the European Union. We received support to improve our company’s competitiveness through the establishment of a food safety quality management system. Through market research we were guided to two quality and sanitary standards: GLOBALG.A.P. at production level, including small-scale producers in the process and the British Retail Consortium (BRC) for the pack house.
These certifications greatly enhanced our growth, because we could now rely on a supply of quality products. As a result, our position in the European Union markets has been significantly improved.
The funding on certifications, however, is not repetitive and since the certifications are renewed every year, we had to look for a system that would help us get through the certification in a more cost effective way. This way is the Farmforce way and our partners PIP through COLEACP saw this as worth funding because of the advantages of the system. And in March 2014, we started the journey of training and implementation of the software of Farmforce. The system is now helping our technical team in implementing the Global Gap certification with much ease and affordably.