Working paper - 22 Seasonal Analysis of Selected Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Prices at Wholesale Level in Key Urban Markets of Kenya

Author(s):  Mathenge, Mary; Tschirley, David


Introduction

Agricultural commodities typically show a strong seasonal pattern in production, with supplies which come off the farm during one or perhaps two distinct periods of the year having to meet relatively stable demand over the course of the entire year.

This seasonal pattern in production can give rise to strong seasonal patterns in price movements, with low prices during and shortly after the harvest, rising to peaks just prior to the next harvest. Understanding this price seasonality, the typical timing and levels of seasonal highs and lows, and the reliability of each, is a key task for anyone wishing to understand the market for an agricultural commodity.

In this Technical Note we present the results of seasonal analysis for seven fresh fruit and vegetable crops in Nairobi, Mombasa, and Kisumu. We chose ripe bananas, kales, dry onions, tomatoes, cabbages, oranges, and potatoes due to their importance in urban consumer diets.

Nairobi, Mombasa, and Kisumu were chosen to provide a cross section of the most important urban consumer markets in the country. The next section presents the data and methods which we used, while section C presents and discusses results.

 

Seasonal Analysis of Selected Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Prices at Wholesale Level in Key Urban Markets of Kenya