IN TWO MONTHS

Ministry to ban use of gunny bags to sell farm produce

Sale of produce like carrots and tomatoes in sacks and crates will not be allowed.

In Summary

• The announcement comes weeks after the government introduced new potato regulations that require that the crop is packaged in 50 kg bags.

•According to Kiunjuri, farmers in the country were losing millions of shillings every year due to the sale of their produce in bags or crates.

Agriculture CS Mwangi Kiunjuri when he launched the Riamukurwe Irrigation Project
Agriculture CS Mwangi Kiunjuri when he launched the Riamukurwe Irrigation Project
Image: EUTYCAS MUCHIRI

The Ministry of Agriculture will ban the sale of all farm produce using gunny bags as part of new crop regulations to be introduced in October. 

Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Mwangi Kiunjuri said the regulations targeting 16 crops will require that they are sold in kilogrammes.

“The new crop regulations will come into force in two months and the sale of produce like carrots and tomatoes in sacks and crates will be a thing of the past,” he said.

 
 
 

The announcement comes weeks after the government introduced new potato regulations that require that the crop is packaged in 50kg bags.

According to Kiunjuri, farmers in the country were losing millions of shillings every year due to the sale of their produce in bags or crates.

Kiunjuri said that there was already a regulation in place targeting seven crops including coffee and potatoes. 

The CS said he will consult Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko to make sure the rule is followed by businessmen bringing the produce to the Wakulima market.

“For the first time in eight years we have been able to have a law protecting potato farmers and it is up to security agencies to ensure it’s enforced to the letter,” he said.

Kiunjuri spoke to the press during a farmer’s field day at Eburru Gilgil. 

“It is now common knowledge that potatoes should be packed in 50 Kilograms bag and those still packing using the older methods will be in for a rude shock,” he said.

 

Nakuru Governor Lee Kinyanjui said his administration has put together an enforcement team to ensure growers, sellers and distributors of the crop adhere to the regulations.

“Once regulations on carrots and tomatoes are enacted in the next two months, the county government will enforce these as well for the benefit of the farmer,” he said.

Kinyanjui said the regulations were clear and those caught transporting potatoes in the old packaging style would face a fine of Sh500,000.

“We thank the ministry for the new regulations and as the 15 potato growing counties we will make sure we implement them as required,” he said.

(edited by O. Owino)