News and Insights
Coconut trees dot the Kenyan coast from Tanzania to Somalia. While more than 100,000 farmers have coconut trees on their land, Kenya’s coconut industry remains underdeveloped. Farmers sell their coconuts at local markets or to small-scale artisanal processors but only a fraction of the coconuts grown each year in Kenya are manufactured into products. What could be a reliable cash crop for farmers is instead largely an after-thought. Kentaste is working to fill the void. The company produces coconut oil, milk, cream, and flakes that it sells into hundreds of grocery stores across the region, and the company has begun to enter global markets. Kentaste today purchases coconuts from thousands of farmers at consistently high volumes and fixed prices, providing a steady income stream. The company also helps farmers improve cultivation practices and helped them weather the recent drought that hit the Horn of Africa. Kyle Denning, the founder of Kentaste, spent time talking with us recently about what brought him to the coconut industry, what he’s learned, and where he plans to take the company.