Brief Profile of Dorper Sheep Breeders’ Society of Kenya

Brief Profile of Dorper Sheep Breeders' Society of Kenya


Dorper Sheep Breeders' Society of Kenya was started in the 1970s, then operating as a sub-committee of Kenya Stud Book. Kenya Stud Book (KSB) was registered under the ambit of Royal Agricultural Show, the predecessor of Agricultural Society of Kenya (ASK). During this time, the Government of Kenya had received support from UNDP/FAO to promote hair sheep in the country. Prior to this initiative, most of the sheep breeding activities were focused on exotic wool breeds. This project had the enormous task of mainstreaming hair sheep mutton production among ranchers, government farms, pastoralists and smallholder sheep keepers. It didn’t take long for the Dorper sheep to endear itself to the livestock farmers due to its adaptation and production qualities. Its mutton hit the market by storm due to its carcass qualities.

The then Dorper sheep society, was tasked with the responsibility of developing an East and Central Africa Dorper Sheep Standard of Excellence. This standard had been in use in the country until recently. The other responsibility was to train Dorper sheep Inspectors and judges. The inspectors were to be used during inspection and registration of Dorper sheep with the KSB, while the judges were to be used during Dorper sheep exhibitions at ASK shows.

This society served the Dorper sheep farmers for many years until progressive farmers realized that the arrangement of having a breed society operating as a sub-committee of KSB was constrained on its mandate. In June 2010, during the Livestock Breeders Show at Jamhuri Park, initiatives were made and contacts were created, to bring farmers together and register a Dorper Sheep Breeders Society of Kenya (DSBSK) with its own constitution.

Body Corporate

Dorper Sheep Breeders Society of Kenya (DSBSK) is a registered farmer’s society. It was registered on 19th September, 2012, vide registration certificate number 38371

Objectives and Powers

1    Provide technical advisory and inspection services, registration and/or recording of pedigrees by Stud Book or in any other way.

2     To ensure the authenticity of the Dorper breed in the country and to promote interest in the breeds in all possible and available manner.

3     To compile reports of the pedigrees and particulars of pure bred Dorpers, to save and keep these or to have it compiled, saved and kept with the view of recording and registration by Stud Book.

4     To promote the sale of Dorpers

5     To breed quality sheep under extensive and semi extensive circumstances, which will reach the desirable market weight within a specific time period, at the most economical price.

6      Stimulate continuous research for the improvement of the Dorper breed.

Management Structure

The interests of the Society are controlled and administered by a committee which is made up of eight members elected at an Annual General Meeting or Special General meeting which has been called for this purpose.

a) After election the new Committee elected from its ranks a Chairman and vice Chairman who will hold this office for a period THREE years.

b) The Chairman, vice Chairman and retiring members shall be eligible for re-election.

c) Nomination for Committee members must be proposed during an Annual General Meeting.

d) Nominations may only be made and seconded by members personally present at the meeting who vote and are eligible to vote.

e) Election procedure: By show of hands. Overwhelming majority.

Together with the eight elected members of the Committee the following member shall also be elected to serve on the Committee:

Breed Director

The Breed Director of the Society who attends all the meetings of the Society has the right to participate in discussions but no right to vote about any problem which is taken at a meeting

Strategic Objectives

  1. To advocate for streamlining of the Dorper Sheep value chain for sustainability and profitability
  2. To promote genetic improvement of the national Dorper flock


Official registration in 2012

A head office opened at MRTC-Isinya, Kajiado County in 2013

Farmers field days: Isinya (MRTC) 20/4/2012; 01/08/2014

Narok field day 7/3/2014

Suswa Field day 27/11/2015

Gicheha farm field day 30/3/2016

Mparos farm field day 16/3/2019

Capacity Building; Trained ten (10) Dorper sheep Inspectors and Judges

Developed the Kenya Dorper Sheep Breed Standard of Excellence

Developed Dorper Sheep Breeding Programme

Establish and operationalize two (2) county offices (Kajiado and Narok) 

Nairobi International Show and Trade Fair;

2013; 2014; 2015; 2016; 2017

Livestock breeders Show &Sale (Trustee and Organizing Committee);




Scientific Conferences

The 6th All Africa Conference on Animal Agriculture (AACAA) (27th-30th October, 2014) at KICC Nairobi Kenya. DSBSK Stand, presentation and chairing session; Pastoral Systems

Seminars and Workshop

State of the Animal Genetic Resources Report for Africa. General Assembly Meeting of the Genetics Project. 22nd – 24th November 2016 Dar-es-Salaam 

Training Workshop on Empowering Livestock Breeders Associations for competitive and sustainable use of Animal Genetic Resources (AnGR). Harare, Zimbabwe, 22nd – 25th May 2017

Implementation Progress on AU-IBAR supported initiatives in the East African region.4th General Assembly and Steering Meetings of the Genetics Project. 7th – 10th November 2017 Nairobi, Kenya 

Workshop on ‘Making Access and Benefit-sharing Work for animal Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture in Africa’. Naivasha, Kenya from 26th – 28th March 2018

Membership and Registrations

Current registered membership stands at 97 farms/farmers 

 Registration of Dorper sheep with KSB stands at 1,026 since year 2012 

 National Activities for 2018/2019:

1. DSBSK 2018 AGM 15th May, 2018

2. Participation in Livestock Breeders Show and Sale 9-11 Aug, 2018

3. Farmers training/field day at MRTC farm, Isinya 13/8/2018

4. The inaugural Narok livestock show, 3 – 5th December, 2018

5. DSBSK 2019 AGM 30th May, 2019

Ongoing Activities and Events

  1. Inspection and registration of Dorper sheep with KSB 
  2. Implementation of Dorper sheep breeding programme
  3. Recruitment of Dorper sheep for Livestock Breeders Show and Sale, 2020
  4. Kenya Climate Smart Agriculture Projects: This is a government of Kenya project, supported by the World Bank. DSBSK is involved in two projects.
  1. Collaborative Adaptive Research Component. This will largely involve implementation of the Dorper sheep breeding programme in two ranches in Kajiado County and two ranches in Laikipia County. This project is domiciled in KALRO and is expected to be rolled out in February, 2020.
  2. Support to producer organization. This project is domiciled at Kajiado County. It will implement the Dorper Sheep breeding programme in Kajiado County and is spear headed by the Kajiado chapter of DSBSK. The rollout of this project will be actualized after the realization of the Inclusive Grant, which is meant to bring Community Interest Groups (CIG) on board.


  1. Resources to reach more farmers
  2. Climatic variations
  3. Volatile market 

Proposed Solution

  1. National Government support
  2. County Government support
  3. Development partner support