29-year-old Mildred Adhiambo is the founder of Zamil Farms Ltd, a goat breeding farm in Katito, Kisumu County.
She ventured into the business in 2020 after an extensive research online which helped her set up the business.
Adhiambo has been running the project for the last two years and she has employed six workers who help her around the farm.
In an interview with Nation, Adhiambo disclosed that she ventured into goat farming in 2020 after realizing struggles that farmers and butchers in Kisumu were grappling with in search of goats.
In her four-acre piece of land, she rears about 100 Galla goat breed.
“I can never be proud of myself enough for taking the brave step to venture into livestock production. This is a lifetime investment I would recommend to my fellow youths,” she said.
Before venturing into goat farming, Adhiambo was practicing poultry farming which came after quitting her job.
“After leaving The Kenya Institute of Monitoring and Evaluation in 2017, I briefly worked with a non-government organisation for two years,” she noted.
She decided to explore goat farming after realizing that profits from poultry farming was way below the cost of inputs.
Adhiambo started doing research and after a few consultations, she settled on goat farming.
“I did research online and consulted with a number of friends before settling on selling goats,” she said.
While doing her research, she realized that butchery owners in most parts of Kisumu were complaining of not meeting their customers’ demands due to lack of goats.
Around the same time, the Kisumu County Government had just donated the Galla goat breed, and most people were interested in it.
With Ksh 70,000, she started looking for clients who would then place their orders after which she traveled to Kiserian, Kajiado County in search of goats.
At the time, her major challenge was getting the right breed.
“My customers would be forced to wait for up to three weeks before I could deliver, and I ended up losing many of them
“Also, since I was starting out, some of my clients were uncomfortable with the idea of paying for the goats in advance,” she recalled.
Adhiambo traded goats for a moment before she finally settled on setting up a goat breeding farm.
Come 2021, she purchased a piece of land in Katito, cleared a small part of the land, fenced it and put up three large sheds to shelter the goats.
After the construction, she bought feeds, some 80 female Galla goats and five males. She then employed four herdsmen, a veterinary and animal health officer.
“Any goat that exhibits undesirable characteristics including miscarriages, are sold to butchers. Our mission is to give our customers the best goat qualities,” she explained.
While most of her clients are butchers, farmers and individuals looking for meat for special occasions, she has bought three more acres to sustain the growing goat population.
She explained that her major challenge is taking care of pregnant goats since with the large population, pregnant goats might go unnoticed.
“We also had cases of goats that would give birth in the grazing fields and since we had not been keen enough, we would end up losing the kids,” Adhiambo further mentioned.
To counter this, Adhiambo has plans to enroll for a degree course in strategic management.