Mary Wambui fondly recalls the trips her family took to their rural home in Lari, Kiambu County, a decade ago. Her daughter, who was a toddler at the time, would always insist on stopping to tease sheep that were grazing by the roadside.
This sparked a passion for animal rearing in Wambui and today, she is one of the leading dairy farmers in her county, practicing zero grazing. Her Mung’ere Farm in Lari’s Gatamaiyu Division is home to 103 cows, 53 of which are lactating. In a day, the cows produce between 1,100 and 1,500 litres of milk, with a current herd rate of 22 litres.
This earns Wambui a gross income of Sh1.2 million per month from milk sales alone, with additional income coming from the sale of other animals raised on the farm such as kienyeji chicken, sheep, goats, and ducks.
Wambui has also improved her breeds over the past five years by using semen imported from Spain, which has boosted milk production and given the cows a better dairy conformation.
Despite the challenges she has faced, such as seasonal scarcity of water and foliage and unreliable workers, Wambui takes pride in her achievement and continues to work hard to make her farm a success.