TOUGH TIMES

High fuel prices raise farm inputs cost, say farmers

They warn move might hamper food production in the country

In Summary
  • The farmers said the increase in fuel prices might hamper food production hence hindering the Big 4 Agenda on food security.
  • They say most farmers who own tractors have taken advantage of the fuel prices and have hiked ploughing costs.

Farmers in Trans Nzoia and West Pokot conties have raised concern over increase in fuel prices that has led to high cost of farm inputs.

The farmers said the increase in fuel prices might hamper food production hence hindering the big four agenda on food security.

Caleb Lumumba, a farmer in Trans Nzoia, said the county is the nation's food basket and the increase in fuel prices might hinder efficient production.

He said since the advent of coronavirus, most farmers within the county have been unable to raise money for planting and ploughing this season.

He said most farmers who own tractors have taken advantage of the fuel prices and have hiked ploughing costs.

“Most small scale farmers will not be able to plant this season and this is going to increase number of people who will depend on help from the government,” he said.

The farmers condemned the hiking of fertiliser prices following increased fuel prices saying it was a pointer of more hard times ahead for farmers.  

Another farmer Bob Musa said farmers within the county are already going through difficult times struggling to raise fees for their children among other issues, adding that hiking fertiliser price will adversely affect the agricultural practices.

Musa asked the government to review prices of fuel to ensure that farmers plant on time.

“We are unable to plant since we have no funds to buy farm inputs. Prices of farm inputs are changing daily because retailers are taking advantage of the increase in fuel prices,” he said.

This comes as West Pokot countY distributed free maize seed to farmers to help increase food production and reduce dependence on relief food.

-Edited by Sarah Kanyara