Dairy Farming In Kenya

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Dairy Farming in Kenya type of livestock farming whereby cattle are kept for milk production with sole purpose of selling the milk to the consumer. There are two types of dairy farming in Kenya, namely:  Commercial dairy farming.    Domestic dairy farming.

Commercial dairy farming in Kenya is practiced in both small and large scale farms. There are two types of commercial dairying in Kenya, namely:

Highland commercial dairy farming

Highland commercial dairy farming is practiced in the Kenya highlands.The major highland dairying areas .

Lowland Commercial Farming 

This is carried out in some parts of the Coast Province. Lowland dairy farms are at Marakwet and Kikambala in Kilifi and Matuga in Kwale produce high dairy yields.

Domestic Dairy Farming

This is a traditional practice which is common among many Kenyan communities.It involves keeping traditional cattle for domestic milk. The milk is consumed by the members of the family. However, several changes have taken place recently. Many domestic cattle keepers in Kenya are now selling their milk to the local markets.

Types of Dairy Cattle Kept in Kenya include;

Friesian Cow

This is a black and white dairy cow which originated from the Netherlands, where it is also known as Holstein. It has soft and fine hair. It accounts for most of the dairy cattle in Kenya.

The Channel Island Cows

These are from Western Europe around the English Channel and are found in several breeds. The main breeds include the Jersey, Guemsey and Alderney. They are commonly reffered to as the Channel Island cows because their origin is around the English channel in Western Europe.


The Jersey cow has colours ranging from white to dark brown. It has a “mealy” ring of light hair on the muzzle. It is an exotic breed which came from Jersey and South England in Britain. The animal is more adaptable to extremes of heat and cold. Jersey are therefore the most numerous and widespread dairy breed in the world. 


A Guernsey is brown in colour with white dots or pale patches. It is an exotic breed from France. The cow is very docile and gives a good yield of rich creamy milk. As a result, th’e breed has become very popular.

Ayrshire Cow

This is an exotic breed from Scotland. It has white and brown patches and smaller than Friesian in size. It can fit in a wide range of climates. The breed gives high milk yields.

The Sakiwal Cow

This is the most suitable breed in the tropical land. It originated from India. It is common in the Government farm in Naivasha. Sahiwal bulls are useful in cross-breeding with traditional cattle.

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