• KBL managing director praised Murang’a governor's foresight to empower farmers
• Kang'ata said he'll use the chance to advocate safe alcohol consumption by youth
Kenya Breweries and Murang’a county have signed a partnership that will see the brewer support farmers growing sorghum.
This is part of the efforts by the alcohol manufacturer to empower communities through gainful employment as well as contribute to the shared growth of KBL.
Speaking during the official signing ceremony at the EABL headquarters, Nairobi, KBL managing director Mark Ocitti praised Murang’a Governor Irungu Kang’ata for his foresight to empower farmers.
This includes those who are integral in the alcohol manufacturing value chain for EABL.
“The actualisation of this deal is a dream come true," Ocitti said.
“It sets the stage for the two entities to work closely in their efforts to create a sustainable pipeline for the much-needed raw material, as well as elevate the status of the farmers."
Farmers will benefit economically from the sale of sorghum to KBL.
To date, KBL has built a solid sorghum and barley value chain that includes the 47,000 who have been contracted to grow sorghum.
This is in Kisumu, Migori, Siaya, Homa Bay, Busia, Tharaka Nithi, Meru, Narok and Nakuru counties.
Additionally, KBL will support the farmers through the provision of affordable credit facilities and field extension services.
It will also link them with seed companies, fertiliser providers and research institutes in a move that will position them to be more competitive.
“We want to replicate the success we have had with the other counties to build a community of farmers, who are capable of contributing fully to the economic development of the country," Ocitti said.
The brewer supports more than 80,000 businesses and employs more than 200,000 people across the value chain.
This includes retailers, farmers, distributors and agents, accounting for almost two per cent of the total employment in the country.
Kang’ata said the deal will help further place farmers on the front-row seat of economic transformation.
“We shall use this opportunity to further advance the conversation on the need to support the consumption of safe alcohol among the youth,” he said.
With an annual demand of about 40,000 tonnes of sorghum, a rise in the production of sorghum-based beer presents an opportunity for farmers across the country.
They stand to benefit from manufacturers and distributors of inputs, processors and retailers through the aggregation of service delivery points.