Unlocking the Potential of Small-Scale Wood Farmers in Kenya

by Diana Chaplin May 23, 2017

We recently partnered with a truly unique organization, one that recognizes not only the environmental impact of deforestation, but also the social and economic needs of local communities in Kenya. 

KOMAZA is Swahili for "promote development; encourage growth"

Komaza is a forestry partner that trains and supports small-scale farmers to grow trees sustainably, providing wood supply to a growing population while generating a good income for the millions of families that nurture these farms.


The Challenge

Africa is the world's largest consumer of wood, with demand expected to double over the next 20 years. Unfortunately, many natural forests have already been cut down, and plantations are unable to meet demand due to limited land, high costs, and risks. This leads to wood imports from other parts of the world, creating skyrocketing costs, poverty, greater carbon emissions from transport, and environmentally unsustainable practices.

The Solution

Komaza uses a model called "microforestry" whereby the collective lands and resources from small farms combine to create opportunities on many fronts:

  1. Farmers benefit by having a crop to grow and the knowledge for how to tend to it sustainably.
  2. The local economy benefits from their wealth.
  3. The high demand for wood is met, hence the need for costly and environmentally damaging importation is reduced.

"Now with a decade of operational experience and industry insights, we are confident smallholder farmers are Africa's only sustainable forestry solution, and Komaza is uniquely positioned to unlock this opportunity." 

We are a donor partner for Komaza this year, supporting their largest seedling delivery operation to date in Kilifi County, allocating 800,000 seedlings to about 2,000 farmers in the region - 50,000 of which came from One Tree Planted. 

We've been told that this has been the best rainy season in years, so everyone is feeling joyful and optimistic to be a part of this planting collective. 

 Want to help plant more trees for environmental and social impact? 

Choose a region, and donate any amount!

Microforestry Komaza

microforestry reforestation


Diana Chaplin
Diana Chaplin


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