Nairobi, Kenya – Nairobi has been chosen as the host city for the 2026 World Potato Congress, marking the first time the congress will be held in sub-Saharan Africa. This exciting development has sparked enthusiasm among potato stakeholders and is seen as a significant milestone for Kenya’s agricultural sector, highlighting the country’s growing influence in the potato industry.
The World Potato Congress is widely recognized as the leading event in the potato industry, providing a platform for knowledge exchange, innovation, and idea sharing that drives the global potato sector forward. Nairobi’s selection as the host city represents a major achievement for Africa’s potato industry and will position Kenya as a premier destination for agricultural conferences and events. The congress is expected to attract approximately 1000 attendees from around the world and is set to have a positive impact on the local tourism economy.
Nairobi’s successful bid to host the congress was spearheaded by the National Potato Council of Kenya and the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock Development, with support from various public and private sector partners such as the International Potato Centre, SSA (CIP), Agriculture and Food Authority (AFA), Kenya Agricultural & Livestock Research Organization, KenInvest, Pest Control Product Board, Kevian Kenya Ltd, Agriculture Sector Network (ASNET), Bayer East Africa, and Syngeta Foundation for Sustainable Agriculture.
Expressing his delight, Peter VanderZaag, President of the World Potato Congress, stated from Canada, “I am delighted that Kenya will host the 13th World Potato Congress in 2026. Kenya is centrally located and a leader in potato research and development in East Africa. I am confident that this congress will raise the profile and capacity of the potato value chain in this region, and provide an opportunity for networking, investment, and trade relations across the potato sector.”
The proposed theme for the World Potato Congress 2026 is “Developing Global Potato Partnerships for Improved Food Systems, Food Security, and International Trade.” This event will provide a unique platform for Kenya and the African continent to showcase their advancements in potato research, farming techniques, and innovation. The congress will bring together farmers, researchers, policymakers, industry leaders, and other stakeholders, fostering collaborations and facilitating the exchange of best practices and cutting-edge technologies.
Potatoes hold a vital position in Kenya, being the second most important food crop after maize. They play a crucial role in ensuring food security, reducing poverty and promoting economic development in the country.
With Nairobi being selected as the host city for the 2026 World Potato Congress, Kenya is set to make its mark on the global potato industry while also strengthening its position as a hub for agricultural excellence and innovation in the region.