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Tips on How to Start an Agrovet Business in Kenya

Vincent Nyoike
Vincent Nyoike Agribusiness

With the increase in agricultural farming in Kenya, an agrovet business in an excellent idea. You need to know how to start agrovet business to succeed. The lack of white-collar jobs has made many people start to livestock farming, creating a demand for livestock products. Nevertheless, starting an agrovet business in Kenya is not a walk in the park. It requires hard work and uniqueness.

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The costs of starting an agrovet business in Kenya depends with the size and location of the business. This is what you need to excel in the agrovet business.

Carry out A Market Research

To succeed in the agrovet business, you need to understand the market. Market research will help you to know the risks in the market and get ready for them. You will also know your competitors and how you can beat them. It will also help you to discover new opportunities, products and services you can provide in the market. Ultimately, you will know whether an agrovet business is viable in the locality you wish to  start one.

Design an Agrovet Business Plan

The first step for those wishing to start an agrovet business in Kenya is to design a business plan. A good agrovet business plan should capture startup costs, business location, competition, advertising, market share, strengths and weaknesses, risks and cash flow projections.

Read more: How to write a business plan. 

Having an agrovet business plan is essential to keep track of business goals and ensure financial discipline. 

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Locate an Excellent Agrovet Business Location

Business location is an essential factor to excel in the agrovet business. Agrovets thrive well near agricultural farms. You need to consider the competition in the area. It is not a wise decision to start an agrovet in an area with many other agrovets. An excellent business location for an agrovet should be:

  • Accessible by on foot customers
  • Secure with adequate storage space for agrovet products
  • Near agricultural farms
  • Well ventilated and with adequate water supply

Obtain the Necessary Agrovet Business Permits and Licenses

To run a legal and successful agrovet business in Kenya, you need to ensure that your business complies with all the set standards. You need the following business licenses to run an agrovet business in Kenya.

Read more: Business licenses you need to operate a business in Kenya

Kenya Plant Health Inspectorate Service (KEPHIS) Certificate

The KEPHIS certificate is essential to ensure that customers have confidence in your products. The certificate is issued only to businesses that sell approved products by KEPHIS.

The government is not keen on checking for the certificate, but it is essential since some of your customers may need assurance that you are selling approved products. Display the certificate in a place where customers can see it. For wholesalers, it costs Ksh 3,000 and Ksh 1,000 for agrovet retailers.

Pest Control and Products Board Certificate

Since you will be dealing with pest control products, you need to get a certificate from the pest control and products board. For retailers, it costs Ksh 1,000 and Ksh 4,000 for wholesalers and distributors. 

County Government Business Permit

You need to get a single business permit from the county government. It is essential for any business and the prices vary from one county to the other. However, the price is around Ksh 10,000 every year.

Identify Products to Sell in Your Agrovet Business

Agrovets sell a wide variety of products that can be used on livestock, farms and pests. Among the products to sell include: animal feeds, pests and sprays, pumps, supplements, fertilizers and agrochemicals.

Make sure to source  agrovet products from reliable suppliers approved by KEPHIS. The following are some agrochemical suppliers in Kenya.

  • Animal and crop-production suppliers. They supply crop and animal products.
  • Animal production suppliers. They only supply animal products.
  • Crop production suppliers. They only deal with crop production supplies.
  • Animal, crop, equipment and industrial chemicals. They deal with a wide range of agricultural products.

Advertise Your Agrovet Business

It is essential to advertise and promote your agrovet business. You need to make potential customers know about the existence of your business and services and products you are providing. You can use posters, business cards for advertisement.

You also need social media presence and if you can, a website would be best for your agrovet business. Always indicate the contact details of your business and respond to customer questions immediately.

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Hire Professionals

You need to hire staffs that are knowledgeable about agricultural products. Also, they need to know how to handle chemicals. Sometimes customers without knowledge about agrochemicals will come asking for your help. As such, you need to advise them appropriately. Therefore, being knowledgeable about agrochemicals will set aside your business from most of your competitors. 

Is Agrovet Business Profitable in Kenya?

Yes. With an excellent business location and customer service, your agrovet business can generate revenue of about Ksh 200,000 every month. Make sure to source products from reputable suppliers and have proper storage of products to prevent losses. For instance, some fertilizers should not be kept in direct sunlight since they are volatile.

Tips to Succeed in the Agrovet Business

Maximize on the Peak Seasons

During the planting seasons, there is a higher demand for agrovet products. Make sure that during such peaks, you have enough stock like seeds and fertilizers. Understand the products that are in demand during peaks and stock them early before suppliers can inflate the prices.

Offering affordable prices is an excellent way to keep your customers coming back. Understand the prices at which your competitors are selling their products. If you can offer slightly lower prices than those of your competitors, you are sure to get more customers.

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Identify the Best Agrovet Distributors and Suppliers in the Market

Getting the best suppliers and distributors is a double benefit for your agrovet business. You will get high-quality products at lower prices. This will give you an opportunity to sell products to your customers at relatively lower prices in the market and keep them coming back. You can source agrovet products from the following companies.

  • Kenya seed company
  • Farmchem
  • Twiga
  • Simlaw seeds
  • MEA fertilizers
  • Syngenta
  • Regina seeds
  • Orbit chemicals
  • Coopers
  • Nairobi veterinary center
  • Organix Limited
  • Ultraveties
  • Pannar seeds
  • Amiran
  • Bazafric

Final Word

Starting an agrovet business requires a lot of hard work, skills and knowledge and  quality customer care. To succeed in the agrovet business, make sure to order supplies from suppliers in small quantities when you are starting. This will help you understand the market and reach more customers without incurring losses. With time and demand, you can scale up your stock.

Read also: How to start a butchery business in Kenya.