Rumuruti Livestock Market
If you live in Nyeri, Nyahururu or Nakuru, there’s a huge chance that this is where your meat comes from.
Held every Thursday a couple of hundred metres north of the town centre, Rumuruti’s Livestock Market attracts sellers from as far as Turkana and Samburu, and buyers from as far as Meru and even Somalia. This is the biggest and best planned market in Laikipia, and definitely one of it’s unique attractions, a place where you can see business conducted, Kenyan style.
A cattle owner will arrive at the gates of the market quite early, and after paying the necessary taxes to the county officials donning yellow overcoats, lead his cattle into the selling pens. A trader will arrive shortly after and strategically park his Canter or truck, ready to carry off his purchases. He will then proceed to walk several circles round each group of animals, with a disinterested look on his face, and with a hint of disgust enquire what the selling price is. The seller will give a lacklustre response then the negotiation begins. If no agreement is made, the buyer will proceed to the next flock, mostly as a way of pushing the price quoted lower. This is repeated several times during the day.
By 12pm, most of the prized animals are sold off, leaving behind those that might not been as ‘healthy’ to the buyer’s eye. These are sold for much lower prices, though the sellers will still try to squeeze an extra hundred shillings so that they can go home with fatter purses.
Oh, and no Visa or MasterCard is accepted here. Only cash or Mpesa plus ya kutoa.