PanAfricare Blog

#WorldPulsesDay: How PanAfricare is Nourishing Dry Turkana through Pulses Farming


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What are pulses?

Pulses are a diverse and nutritious group of plant-based foods that include a range of dried beans, lentils, peas, dry beans, dry broad beans, dry peas, green grams, cow peas, pigeon peas, lentils, vetches and lupins They are often a staple food in many countries and have been enjoyed for their rich, earthy flavor and high protein content for centuries. Whether simmered into a hearty soup or pureed into a creamy hummus, pulses are incredibly versatile and play a vital role in ensuring food security for millions of people around the world.

Meet the pulse farmers…

Pulses are an essential component of a healthy and balanced diet, providing important nutrients such as protein and iron.

They are also important sources of food in many dry regions of the world, where traditional crops may struggle to grow. In Turkana County, Kenya, for example, farmers are finding success growing a variety of pulses through irrigation.

Through the IMPACT Program funded by Bayer Fund, PanAfricare is proud to support these farmers by providing irrigation infrastructure that makes it possible for them to grow pulses. Two farmers in particular, Ann Akidor in Turkana South and Nancy Ekiru in Turkwel, are making great strides in pulse production through irrigation.

Ann Akidor grows cowpeas in Nyangaita using water from a borehole at the farm. With the help of PanAfricare, she has been able to go back to her farm which had dried up due to the drought. “It takes two-three months for cowpeas to mature. We sell the leaves and later harvest the peas in the pods.” Said Akidor.

Ann Ekidor in Nyang’aita farm in Turkana South


She added that the piping system set at the farm has made it very easy as every farmer has a connection point that they connect pipes to.

The cowpeas provide a much-needed source of nutrition for her family and community. Cowpeas are an excellent source of protein, and they are also rich in vitamins and minerals. Additionally, cowpeas are a staple food in many parts of Kenya and are a valuable addition to the local diet.

Nancy Ekiru is one of the farmers who grow green grams in Napak farm using canal irrigation. “Green grams grow well her compared to other crops. The mature fast and the yield is good.” Said Ekiru.Green grams are a nutritious pulse that is high in fiber and protein, and they are a staple food in many parts of Africa. With the help of PanAfricare, Nancy has been able to increase her crop yields, providing a much-needed source of food for her family and community.

Green grams in Napak farm


The provision of irrigation infrastructure is just one way that PanAfricare is supporting farmers in Kenya. By making it easier for farmers to grow pulses, we are helping to improve food security and nutrition for communities across the continent.

Napak farm

Pulses are an important source of food for people who live in dry regions, and they play a crucial role in improving food security and reducing poverty.

Pulses are also an important source of income for farmers, who can sell their crops to local markets. This additional income can be used to improve the lives of farmers and their families, and it can also be invested back into the local community.

In addition to providing irrigation infrastructure, PanAfricare is also working to improve the sustainability of pulse production in the program areas. We are providing training and support to farmers to help them grow healthier crops and reduce the effects of climate shocks on their livelihoods.

In conclusion, PanAfricare is committed to supporting the farmers of Kenya and improving the lives of communities in dry regions. Through the provision of irrigation infrastructure, we are helping to make it easier for farmers to grow nutritious and sustainable crops, improving food security and nutrition for all.