• Price increase comes less than two months after leading processors including New-KCC increased milk prices to Sh33 per litre and Brookside to Sh35 per litre from a low of Sh26.
• Brookside’s director of milk procurement and manufacturing, John Gethitold farmers to also use the extra income to invest in animal feed management for their animals.
Brookside Dairies has increased buying of milk prices by one shilling to cushion farmers against the economic effects of the coronavirus pandemic.
Dairy farmers will now be able to buy milk at Sh36 up from Sh35 per litre.
Brookside’s director of milk procurement and manufacturing, John Gethi, said in a statement that the changes will be effective from Wednesday, April 1 as it seeks to temper the financial shocks of the current Covid-19 and climate change.
“As the country implements far-reaching measures to contain the coronavirus and its threats onto the economy, and especially agriculture, we decided to increase farm-gate prices of milk that will not only boost the dairy farming businesses but also help minimize the negative financial impacts of the current Covid-19 which is also affecting the dairy farming community,” said Gethi.
He said the increase will see the processor pay up to Sh 36 per kilo, a welcome relief for farmers at a time businesses are re-evaluating strategies to survive the evolving impact of the coronavirus on the economy.
The latest price increase comes less than two months after leading processors including New-KCC increased milk prices to Sh33 per litre and Brookside to Sh35 per litre from a low of Sh26.
Gethi told farmers to also use the extra income to invest in animal feed management for their animals.
“The new prices are also an incentive to our farmers to invest in climate-smart dairy practices, such as the establishment of fodder crops and pasture with the expected commencement of the long rain season,” he added.
He said Brookside would continue to buy all milk supplied to it by its contracted farmers, besides providing guaranteed payments.
Gethi called on farmers to seek the services of veterinary professionals to help them in the treatment of cows recovering from the recent outbreak of Foot and Mouth Disease across major milk production areas.
He emphasized the role of dairy co-operatives in the aggregation and transport of milk along the value chain, saying farmers who are members of these groups stood to benefit from economies of scale.
“We would like to encourage as many dairy farmers as possible to join co-operatives to benefit from the pricing incentives currently in place. They are a huge boost to the formal milk marketing channels,” he said.
David Korir, a farmer from Elburgon Progressive Dairy Farmers co-operative society in Nakuru county said hawkers cannot guarantee regular payments for milk.
“Many times, they are unable to cope with increased production, besides being beset by concerns on food safety and milk quality,” he said.