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Prof. Rhoda Birech

Dr. Prof. Rhoda BirechProf. Rhoda Birech - Board Member OCA
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Prof. Rhoda Birech is a Board Member of Organic Consumers Alliance (OCA), and an Associate Professor of Sustainable Agriculture with over 25 years of experience in Agronomy with a focus on Sustainable Agricultural Systems. She has a Doctorate degree in Organic Agriculture from the University of Natural Recourses and Life Sciences (BOKU), Austria (2008) and a Post-doctorate in Bio-energy from the same University. Over the years she has involved herself in University level teaching, research, administration, community development, Science, Technology and Innovations (STI) and in related sustainable development endeavors.

Rhoda has a wealth of experience in research and has received a number of awards of excellence in academics and research. She has won various international grants from 2006 to date to coordinate and undertake research in the areas of Organic & Sustainable Agriculture, Agribusiness, Soil Fertility & Fertilizers, Seed Science & Technology, Agroforestry & Forestry, Renewable Energy, Water Resources and Climate Change. Her research outputs are published in various international journals. Besides research, Rhoda has a passion for partnerships building, enterprise development, resource mobilization, mentorship of young scientists and working with farmers and communities. She sits in a number of national and international boards of management at both public and private sectors. She brings all these top level experiences to the Board of OCA.

Rhoda has initiated several programs with rural farmers which are dedicated to promoting rural development through holistic and sustainable small-scale farming, in Kenya and beyond. Her thematic focus and concept is to support organic food production and to build long-term fertility through nutrient cycling and erosion control. Towards that end, she works with farmers to build the integrity of ecosystems by avoiding pollution, using renewable energy and judiciously utilizing water and forest resources to ensure that the agro-ecological systems are bio-diverse and adapted to drought. From agro-value chain perspective, Rhoda has facilitated the linkage of farmers, especially organic farmers, to local and international markets thus creating incomes, jobs, access to healthy foods by discerning consumers and generating wealth in both rural and urban Kenya and beyond: Some of the agro-ecological farms have developed to become Learning Centre’s of Excellence for farmers, consumers, students and scientists. She believes “It is no secret that we will thus secure a bright future”!

Dr. Cecilia Moraa Onyango

Dr. Cecilia Moraa OnyangoDr. Cecilia Moraa Onyango - Board Member OCA
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Dr. Cecilia Moraa Onyango is a board member of OCA and a Senior Lecturer at the Department of Plant Science and Crop Protection, University of Nairobi. Dr. Onyango earned her PhD from Wageningen University, the Netherlands; and both her MSc. in Horticulture and BSc. in Agriculture from the University of Nairobi.

She has over 15 years of experience in a broad range of  agricultural practice and related sustainable development  areas which include; crop production and postharvest handling with a focus on production environment and food safety; conservation of biodiversity; eco-efficient bio-resource management; stress physiology and temperature-based modulation of plant growth and development; grading and standards; and participatory farmer and end-user technology evaluation, selection and adoption.

Her expertise and experience continues to impact various levels of value chain stakeholder interests including; policy, strategy, implementation, monitoring and evaluation and related skills transfer. Additionally, she has consultancy knowledge, skills and expertise on systems intensification and market led sustainable socio-economic development.

 Dr. Onyango has proven leadership and management skills and experience: She has provided leadership in executing various projects to provide information on crop production practices and food quality which include; agroecological intensification techniques for climate change adaptation and mitigation; and consumption trends and the safety of foods sold and consumed in Kenya and the Eastern Africa Region.

Dr. Onyango is a firm believer in an engendered development approach to ecosystem health and sustainability; she believes that there is a strong linkage between soil health, crop production environment and practices, and the quality and safety of the harvested product, which product is ultimately consumed for nourishment to achieve food and nutrition security and ultimately a sustainably improved quality of health and life.

Our Contacts

Organic Consumers Alliance
Address: Kaputei Gardens, Lavington
P. O. Box 2398 - 00200
Nairobi, Kenya
Mobile: +254 722 435 758
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Catherine Kinyanjui

cateCatherine Kinyanjui is a board member of OCA. She represents the interests and aspirations of a mostly young Kenyan population. Her role in the board is strategically defined to represent the ageless and futuristic vision of OCA. Catherine is a development practitioner with over half a decade of experience in development research and policy formulation on regional growth and development in Kenya and the Eastern Africa Region.

A majority of these experiences have been in continuously improving the living environment with a critical look at sustainable natural resource utilisation and management.

Key among the solutions she has actively participated in and promoted include sustainable small holder agricultural production which embraces organic agriculture, sustainable resource exploitation, private sector inclusion and promotion of sustainable and environmentally friendly development efforts. These interventions have resulted in improved access to affordable livelihoods and adequate nutrition for rural communities, especially the youth and women. All these efforts are aimed at improving the quality of the human experience by creating an enabling socio-economic environment.

She has experience in policy engagement and related advocacy with a critical view of impacting better agricultural and health development, improved livelihoods and poverty reduction, and subsequently, with the impact of development policies on the achievement of a better quality of life goals. To this end, she has continued to build her research skills and hands-on experience in ensuring that regional growth incorporates practical solutions to ensure that the link between agriculture , the living environment and health is prioritized within the overall economic and development plans.

It is instructive to note that Catherine is the daughter of a practising organic farmer. She has grown up experiencing agro-ecological organic farming first hand, while consuming the organic foods, free from pesticides and other environmental toxins, from the family farm to the family table. This has had a lasting impact on her world view, having been exposed, first hand, to the benefits of consuming organically grown foods, from an early age, on the family farm. As a result of this rich family background, she has continued to practice and promote an organic lifestyle in her adult life. Towards that end, she has become a living embodiment of the Vision, Mission and Values that OCA stands for.

As a post-graduate candidate, at the Institute of Development Studies, UoN, she continues to participate in development research and engage the policy and academic community on innovative social solutions on attitude and lifestyle change, natural resource management, exploitation and utilisation for healthy environments, sustainable and practical small holder farming policies and agro-ecological friendly and pro-poor policy interventions within East Africa and Sub-Sahara Africa.

 

Prof Raphael G. Wahome

profProf Raphael G. Wahome – Chairman of OCA

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Statement of purpose

Prof Wahome is the founding chairman of OCA and a professor of Livestock Production systems at the University of Nairobi where he has been teaching for the last thirty years. He has veterinary background having been trained at the University of Nairobi, Alberta and Guelph Universities in Canada. His research has focused on healthy commercially viable agricultural systems. Currently he is the Kenyan ProGrOV project manager. ProGrOV seeks to improve productivity along organic value chains through participatory field and on station research that yields specialized knowledge and skills needed to produce, promote and avail healthy food products to organic consumers.  The project builds capacity for research and teaching while seeking solutions for challenges of developing organic value chains in Eastern Africa Region.

He believes on the importance of nature and cultural experiences with the abilities to give rise to sustainable systems that support enterprise and produce innovation based on indigenous and traditional knowledge and practices. Nevertheless, he is convinced of the need for continued learning: within production, processing and distribution networks; local and global - hence his commitment to teamwork.  His approach to activities is founded on the principle that quality is an attitude built on character, with endeavour to continuously consult with people to ensure fulfilment of their desires.   

The greatest enjoyment that people can have is derived from food. When food is scarce, almost anything will do: and it is received with gratitude and a feeling of satisfaction.  However, not just any food will provide necessary health for enhanced enjoyment of life. The body’s physiological mechanisms soon demand better and more balanced food to continue functioning. There are levels of functioning that are possible with ordinary low quality foods. However, human wellbeing demands that good quality and safe foods be made available and that people have healthy lifestyles in healthy environments.  Prof Wahome relates need for good policy, strategies and implementation knowledge, skills and practices for pertinent health and safety issues, within the broader context of an eco-friendly and sustainable development agenda.

Prof Wahome insists that eating of good quality, safe and organic foods makes sense to anyone with a caring spirit – whatever the concern. For those who worry about making money, there are numerous opportunities ranging from input manufacturing and distribution to product processing and consumption. Those who care about people realize fulfilment from the fairness principle of organic production. Environmental responsibility is addressed through ecologically balanced production practices that emphasize nutrient recycling, waste reduction and reuse. Organic production and consumption also brings people who care together; providing forums for discussion on what we can do to make our lives more meaningful and healthier.

He says “live right, eat well, care and discuss… and you will have a fulfilled life’.

Going Organic in East Africa

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organic farmers
 

Organic Farmers

This is just a few names and contacts of organic farmers who work closely with OCA.

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Demo
 

Organic Markets

The retailers buy thei food from the organic farmers and sell them at various organic

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Demo
 

Restaurants

OCA works closely and directs traffic to the only organic restaurant in Nairobi so far.

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Processors

OCA closely works with one processor whose products are certified organic.

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About Us

Organic Consumers Alliance (OCA) focuses on promoting and creating awareness on

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Office Location

ICIPE Complex, Kasarani Road

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Contact Us

P.O. Box 2398-00200
Nairobi, Kenya
Tel: +254 20 2610863
Cell: +254 722 435 758
Email: info@organicconsumers.co.ke