The Success Story of Isaiah Matinyi

Meet Isaiah Matinyi, a 33-year-old farmer and dedicated farmer trainer from Busia County. Isaiah’s passion for agriculture extends beyond his own farming endeavors, as he has taken on the role of mentoring six local farming groups in his community. His unwavering commitment to enhancing OFSP production has not only transformed his own life but has also created a ripple effect of positive change among his fellow farmers.

Isaiah’s journey into the realm of OFSP farming and training was made possible through his
involvement with Africa Harvest under the InnoFoodAfrica Project. This transformative experience equipped him with a comprehensive understanding of OFSP cultivation, covering essential aspects such as best agronomic practices, post-harvest handling techniques, and effective pest and disease management.

The impact of this knowledge has been nothing short of remarkable. Isaiah attests, “Following the training, we witnessed a significant impact, particularly in the area of seed production. We gained access to high-quality seeds, which ultimately led to increased yields and higher incomes for farmers.”Moreover, the surge in production has generated valuable employment opportunities within the community, as more hands are needed to manage the growing output.

Isaiah’s dedication extends beyond knowledge sharing; he is also on a mission to empower his communty with valuable entrepreneurship skills. He proudly shares, “One of the groups I trained generated a
substantial income from their produce. They wisely invested their earnings in purchasing dairy cows, and some ventured into poultry farming”.

Isaiah shares that the group has now transitioned into commercial farming and are actively exploring
additional avenues to generate income. “There is a growing interest among people to engage in Orange-Fleshed Sweet Potato farming, as they have seen the significant profits it can yield.”

One of the key challenges faced by OFSP farmers was the scarcity of quality seeds. However, Isaiah notes a positive shift after the training. “Initially, we faced difficulties in sourcing OFSP seeds. Thanks to Africa Harvest’s guidance on constructing net tunnels and subsequently expanding seed production, we no longer encounter seed shortages,” he proudly states. Despite the formidable hurdles, including the
unpredictable impact of shifting climatic conditions, Isaiah remains resolute and resourceful.

He continuously devises innovative strategies to overcome the daily challenges that come his way. Looking ahead, Isaiah has ambitious plans to explore value addition for OFSP. His next goal is to acquire a specialized machine capable of producing flour from OFSP, with a particular focus on manufacturing both wheat and porridge flour. The nutritious porridge flour, targeting children, holds promise for enhancing community health. Isaiah envisions collaborating with local supermarkets to efficiently distribute these products, making them readily available to a broader audience.

Isaiah Matinyi’s journey demonstrates how knowledge, passion, and dedication can ignite positive change within communities. Through his leadership and commitment to OFSP farming and training, he
continues to shape a brighter, more prosperous future for Busia County and beyond.

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