Dr. Stephen Mbithi
Chief Executive Officer, Kenya Horticulture Industry Association (FPEAK-Kenya)
Dr Stephen Mbithi Mwikya (43) is the Chief Executive Officer of the Kenya Horticulture Industry association, known as the Fresh produce Exporters Association of Kenya (FPEAK), which brings together about 150 companies involved in production and export of fruits vegetables and flowers from Kenya to the EU (82%) and the rest of the world. Kenya’s horticulture exports amount to one billion US$, which has been the largest forex earner for the last 3 years. 70% of export fruits and vegetables are produced by smallholders. Horticulture supports the economic livelihood of 4.5 million people in Kenya (11% of the country’s population). It is a dynamic sector that is knowledge and technology intensive, and relies of superior cultivars and seed technology (with lots of intellectual property aspects) to enhance productivity and hence sustain global competitiveness..
Dr Stephen Mbithi is a Ph.D graduate from University of Ghent in Belgium; specializing on Standards and postharvest technology. He is also the Coordinating CEO of the Horticulture Council of Africa (HCA), an umbrella body bringing together 13 horticulture industry associations across Africa. He also sits on the GlobalGAP sector committee (standard drafting) on fruits and vegetables, and has extensive knowledge on trade and SPS standards in public-private partnerships especially in horticulture and fisheries.