Regulate cheap imports to save us from losses, say rice farmers

A rice farmer inspects her farm at Ahero Rice Irrigation Scheme in Nyando Sub-county. National Irrigation board plan to boost production through gravity flow as opposed to pumping of water. Photo/Maurice Alal
A rice farmer inspects her farm at Ahero Rice Irrigation Scheme in Nyando Sub-county. National Irrigation board plan to boost production through gravity flow as opposed to pumping of water. Photo/Maurice Alal

Farmers have asked the government to regulate importation of cheap rice to save them from making losses. Led by Gerald Odoyo, rice growers at the West Kano Irrigation Scheme on Saturday asked for the establishment of a mill in the area.

“The mill will allow for the processing and packaging of rice for sale in local supermarkets,” Odoyo said. He said cheap imports have flooded the market making it difficult for farmers to sell. “We also have the challenge of driving away birds. The government should find us an appropriate technology to deal with the birds,” Odoyo said. He spoke to reporters at the scheme even as National Irrigation Board manager Joel Tanui called for better marketing strategies.