• Meru Dairy Union CEO Kenneth Gitonga says the influx of milk products from Uganda is hurting the industry and there is need for urgent intervention.
• He said the county and national governments have not taken action to safeguard dairy farmers and called on leaders to get involved.
Dairy farmers in Meru have raised concerns over poor prices and the influx of illegal milk products in the country.
Meru Dairy Union CEO Kenneth Gitonga said the influx of milk products from Uganda is hurting the industry and there is need for urgent intervention.
He said the influx of milk products is not good for local dairy farmers as it results in price decrease.
He said that farmers are getting Sh17 per litre, which is very low.
“We are aware there is milk powder coming from outside the country. Last week, we saw some traders being arrested in Eastleigh, Nairobi. We want more action on people who are importing milk products without following the due process,” Gitonga said.
Gitonga said farmers are disappointed with the poor prices and the silence by their leaders.
Gitonga said leaders should take action and respond to farmers’ grievances and concerns.
He said the county and national governments have not taken action to safeguard dairy farmers and called on leaders to get involved.
He added that the Kenya Dairy Board should implement the newly proposed regulations to protect milk farmers.
“We demand speedy implementation of the proposed regulations by the Ministry of Agriculture through the Kenya Dairy Board to level the playground. The government should mop up the milk supply to safeguard the sector and take action on illegal substandard imports,” Gitonga said.
Simon Kiruja, the chairman of the Meru Dairy Union, asked Meru county government to domesticate the proposed regulations to cushion milk farmers against poor feeds, substandard inputs and ensure they play their role at the local level.
“All dairy products in Meru county should be registered for control and protect the dairy industry. Leaders should speak in one voice to protect the dairy sector," he said.
He added that farmers should be educated on the proposed regulations.
Kiruja said the Meru Dairy Union will train its farmers on the new challenges such as aflatoxin antibiotics and bacteria count.
Meru Dairy was established in 1967.