Kilimo Trust (KT) is a non-profit and non-political regional organization contributing to efforts designed to make the East African Common Market work for the reduction of poverty and elimination of hunger in the region. This is being done through regional solutions to local problems in ways that contribute to developing strong regional agricultural value chains that enhance security of incomes, food, and nutrition in the region. The mission of KT is to “catalyze the growth and competitiveness of strategic agricultural sectors for the benefit of a large number of people in East Africa”.
KT’s work responds to EAC policies and strategies. It has chosen as its core business, the job of supporting the transformation of food and nutrition security in the EAC Region away from high risk subsistence farming into lower risk trade-based systems. As is the case in developed countries, in a trade based food security system all consumers including those who are in farming obtain the most of the food they consume by purchasing food that is increasingly processed, stored and distributed to meet different needs and preferences. Why is this important? Because, the very low levels of specialization in the production of food commodities by smallholders within EAC, dominated by subsistence farming encourage the production of food commodities in unsuitable agro-ecological zones, leading to perpetuation of hunger and poverty.