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Enterprise

Trader discovers recipe for success in affordable food

Khadija Mohamed
Kwanza Tukule founder Khadija Mohamed. PHOTO | DIANA NGILA | NMG 

Khadija Mohamed’s desire is to ensure that Kenyans have access to nutritious and affordable food. This is what drove her to start her business, Kwanza Tukule last year in September.

With Sh800,000 capital, she set up a shop at Nairobi’s Industrial Area, with the focus of her business being the informal sector.

She buys fortified farm produce, mainly pulses, directly from farmers and boils them before selling to street vendors. Her menu include fortified beans, green grams, black eye peas and githeri.

The food is cooked overnight and then picked up by seven in the morning by motorcycle riders who then distribute to food vendors.

“The business model was born out of the realisation that an estimated 10 million Kenyans, whether living in urban or rural areas, experience routine hunger. In the urban areas, these Kenyans rely on street food,” says Ms Mohamed.

In a short span, her business has grown in leaps and bounds and has on board 138 food vendors within Nairobi. This demonstrates how hungry Kenyans are for nutritious but affordable food, she notes.

The enterprise now has a team of 11 staff.

“We sell about 200 kilos a day. We supply to all our clients every day of the week,” she says.

Ms Mohamed, who buys pulses from different parts of the country, says her goal is to buy low and sell low throughout the year so that her clients do not experience price fluctuations at any moment.

She hopes to not only break even in two year, but also to make a name selling nutritious but affordable food.

Ms Mohammed is also keen on conserving the environment and uses biogas in cooking her food.

“We collect food waste from vendors and use it for our biogas digester. We also do barter trade with local farmers who supply us with manure. We also offer them beans soup which they give to their cows,” she says.

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