Kenyan Maize Flour Business Report 2019: Market, Process, Production and Finance -

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This report looks at the maize milling business in Kenya. Maize is Kenya's staple food.

The end product of the milling process is maize flour also known as maize meal. The flour is used to make ugali, a meal consumed by 78 % of Kenya's 48 million people. It's also consumed as porridge.

A milling business makes money by selling flour to consumers. The report covers the market, regulation, production and financial aspects of the business.

For comparison, we use the option of setting up in Nairobi, the capital city and biggest market, and the alternative of establishing upcountry where the market is not so crowded.

As of August 2019 1 USD = KES. 101. The Kenya Shilling is also denoted as Kshs.

The Opportunity

As of 2018, the per capita consumption of maize in Kenya was 60 kgs, equivalent to 5kgs per person per month. Despite slight fluctuations, in favour of other food varieties, maize consumption has remained within the same range since 2009.

We predict that in the next 10-15 years consumption will rise between 3% and 6%. This is because of tradition which ties consumers to ugali despite there being other cheaper sources of calories.

Changing this culture requires a combination of open attitudes and proper government policy to make other products enticing, and not just by pricing. Previous attempts to shift the consumer from ugali have failed because of entrenched habits, poor design and implementation.

Compared to other equivalent products maize flour is easily accessible, and when the market is stable, affordable. A shop is likely to stock maize flour than it is to stock wheat flour.

Urbanization increases the consumption of maize flour. Consumers relocate from their farms to towns where they have to buy food. In 2017 Kenya's urbanization rate was 26.56%, against 26.11% in 2016, and 25.66% in 2015. Since 2007 Kenya's urbanization rate has been rising, and this is expected to continue in the long term.

Devolution is presently driving urbanization. Devolution has created opportunities in the counties. In turn encouraging consumers to move from the rural to the urban. Urbanization is also a result of infrastructural development which opens up previously inaccessible areas thus stimulating trade.

Although there exists competition in the flour business, models employed by a number of millers are inefficient thus creating a chance to cannibalize their market. The present opportunity is not only in fulfilling demand but also in new business models that respond to the needs of end-users and vendors alike. One being the production of high-quality flour. Two consistencies in quality and distribution. Three in building trust among consumers.

Key Topics Covered

1. Overview

2. The Opportunity

3. The Upcountry Choice - Case Study: Central Kenya

  • Disadvantages
  • Advantages

4. Case Study - The Choice of Nairobi

  • Disadvantages
  • The Advantages

5. Target Market

  • Keys to Success

6. The Product

  • Product Details
  • Wholemeal versus Sifted Flour - The Realities
  • Product Details: Packaging

7. The Market Analysis

  • Industry Outlook
  • Barriers to Entry
  • Maize Consumption in Kenya: Some Figures
  • Maize Consumption by Region
  • Maize Consumption by Urban Center
  • Trends in the Maize Flour Business in Kenya

8. Key Customers

  • Customer Profiles
  • Lower-Income Consumers
  • Middle-Income Consumers

9. Competition: Description and Comparison

  • Case Study: Central Kenya Millers & Brands
  • Nairobi: Millers & Brands
  • Brands: Some Images
  • Fast Selling Brands - Nairobi.
  • Brands by Strength
  • Brand Strength: Shelf Space
  • Brand on Shelves: Positive Traits
  • Brand on Shelves: Negative Traits
  • Existing Brands: SWOT
  • Marketing and Sales Strategies.
  • Maize Flour: Consumer Expectations
  • Miller to Consumer Chain
  • Distribution: Retailer
  • Generating Demand: Two Methods
  • Sample Advertising Rates
  • Retailer Brand Choice: Quality
  • Quality: Retailer &Customer Opinion
  • Quality: Broad strokes

10. Availability

  • Retailers: Stocking Independent Brands
  • Retailers: Willingness to Stock New Brand

11. Pricing

  • Retailer Distribution: Things To Think About
  • Retailer: Sales Averages
  • Retailer Stocking: Margins
  • Sales Process Flow
  • Retailers & Consumers: Choosing Your Brand

12. Production Plan

  • Production Flow
  • Milling Equipment
  • Notes on Equipment
  • Milling Equipment: Factors To Consider
  • Non Milling Equipment
  • Equipment: Possible Set Up
  • Equipment Suppliers
  • Premises
  • Premises: Design Concerns
  • Possible Layout of A Maize Mill
  • Premises: Extra Renovations
  • Raw Material Requirements

13. The Maize Value Chain

  • Value Chain Notes
  • Shelf Life
  • Fortification
  • Manpower.
  • Basic Staff: Basic Structure
  • Basic Staff: Advanced Structure
  • Staff: Possible Roles
  • Support Services

14. Licenses

15. Packet Design

  • Trends in Packet Design
  • KEBS Guidelines on Packaging
  • Packets: Observations.
  • Packet Design Process
  • Cost of Packets
  • Packet Design: Factors to Consider
  • Packet Printing: Some Companies
  • Barcode Providers

16. Revenue

  • Flour
  • Cost of Maize
  • Cost of Sifting the Flour
  • Cost of Packaging
  • Cost of Distribution and Marketing
  • Revenue: Total Cost of Producing a Packet
  • Margins

17. Production Planning, Management, and Miscellaneous Tips

18. Questions to Ask

Companies Mentioned

  • Winnie's Pure Health Limited
  • Unga Limited
  • Mombasa Maize Millers
  • Pembe Millers
  • Kitui Millers
  • Eldoret Grains
  • Millers
  • Nairobi Flour Millers
  • Osho Grains
  • National Cereals Produce Board
  • Joy Millers
  • Baraka Millers
  • Capwell Industries
  • ASL Kenya
  • Buhler Limited
  • ABC Hansen Africa
  • KG Mills Limited

For more information about this report visit

Laura Wood, Senior Press Manager
For E.S.T Office Hours Call 1-917-300-0470
For U.S./CAN Toll Free Call 1-800-526-8630
For GMT Office Hours Call +353-1-416-8900

Laura Wood, Senior Press Manager
For E.S.T Office Hours Call 1-917-300-0470
For U.S./CAN Toll Free Call 1-800-526-8630
For GMT Office Hours Call +353-1-416-8900