Uganda milk, eggs flood Busia as prices in Kenya rise

In Summary

• The Kenya Dairy Board last week said raw milk supplies had dropped by five percent.

• A 500ml packet of fresh milk processed locally presently retails at Sh 60 in Busia, Sh10 more than what shop owners charge for milk coming from Uganda.

Traders in Busia county are handling more Ugandan milk and eggs after the prices of local commodities increased.

A spot check by the Star between Thursday and Monday showed that most processed milk and eggs sold  in Busia’s major outlets are sourced from Uganda.

They include Lato and Whole Milk. Lato is processed and marketed by Pearl Dairy Farms in Mbarara in Western Uganda.            

The only visible Kenyan milk brands in shops are Mount Kenya and Daima.

The Kenya Dairy Board last week said raw milk supplies had dropped by five percent.

The board said milk sold to processors had declined from 56 million kilos in January to 54 million kilos in February before slipping off again to 53 million kilos in March.

Traders interviewed said they opted for the imported products following slow supplies by local dealers coupled by price increase.

The producer price of milk has gone up by Sh5 a factor processors attributed to the  extended dry spell.

A 500ml packet of fresh milk processed locally currently retails at Sh 60 in Busia, Sh10 more than what shop owners charge for milk from Uganda.

“We prefer milk from Uganda because it’s cheap and it’s of high quality,” Mercy Anangwe who runs a retail shop in Amagoro town said yesterday.

She said milk from Uganda is affordable and its reliable.

New KCC Managing Director Nixon Sigey recently said price reduction will be determined by the rains.

Kenyan traders along the border usually capitalise on the Ugandan market whenever there is a reduction in the supply of consumable products in Kenya.

Shop owners in Busia and Malaba towns, Angurai, Malakisi, Nambale, Chakol and other shopping areas are also taking advantage of the proximity of the Ugandan market to stock shelves with Ugandan processed sugar.

An egg supplied by Kenyan traders retailed at Sh15 up from Sh12 before the end of March imports from Uganda sold at Sh10.

“In most cases eggs that we find in the market are those coming from Uganda. Our Kenya suppliers are seasonal,” a shop owner in Malaba town, Julius Etee said.

He said the unreliability of the Kenyan egg market is what pushes them to buy the product from Uganda.