• Kilimol project manager Mikio Oyama said on Wednesday adopting mechanical tools will transform farming at Mwea rice irrigation scheme.
• Oyama said they intend to sell 100 machines of a similar type to Mwea rice farmers.
Kirinyaga rice farmers have been encouraged to mechanize their farming to improve production and make work easier.
Mwea rice farmers have been encouraged to mechanise their farming to improve production and make work easier.
Kilimol project manager Mikio Oyama said on Wednesday adopting mechanical tools will transform farming at Mwea rice irrigation scheme. Oyama is a Japan-based investor.
He spoke when he demonstrated to Mwea farmers how to use lighter, modern and efficient ploughing tractors, paddy weeders and combined harvesters.
“All the apparatus are advanced and small, thus very economical and relevant for use in the Kenya rice paddies. Our goal is to make farming easier and more enjoyable,” Oyama said.
Oyama said many farmers have been using ordinary heavy tractors which have time and again caused them great inconveniences as they leave patches of holes underneath the mushy paddies.
"With the use of modern lighter tractors, they will level the farms thus easing work for the farmers.”
Oyama said they intend to sell 100 machines of a similar type to Mwea rice farmers.
He said the three equipment retail between Sh1.3 million and Sh2.8 million per piece.
“Farmers who can afford could buy these machines and can lease them out to their fellow farmers when need arises," farmer Mwangi Mburu said.
He said the available farming equipment are not as efficient as the ones that were been introduced to them on Wednesday.
Mwangi said most of them are forced to use ox carts for ploughing and rice sickles for harvesting.
"We look forward to a bountiful harvest once we start using them.”
Amos Mwangi, another farmer, said he was impressed with the combined harvester, which separates grains from the stalk.
“In a matter of minutes, it had harvested more than 50kg of rice. This is very impressive.”
Simon Gichira praised their machines, saying they are fast, have oil saving motors and do not get stuck on the mushy paddies.