Kakamega launches Sh7 billion dairy project
BY HILTON OTENYO
Kakamega government has launched a Sh7 billion dairy project that will provide a cow to every household. Governor Wycliffe Oparanya said the One Cow Initiative programme is a partnership between Netherland’s, Kenya Smart Dairy, Equity bank and the county government.
He said the first phase would benefit 600 farmers, 10 in each of the 60 wards in the county. “The factory will provide employment 5000 people from the county,” he said while launching the programme at Lumakanda ground in Lugari sub-county.
Oparanya said that Equity Bank has set aside Sh2 billion to provide affordable loans to residents wishing to venture in dairy farming. Adding project will also help farmers from the county to diversify their activities to avoid over reliance on sugar cane.
Meru Farmers urged to not shun coffee farming
BY KIRIMI MURITHI
Coffee farmers in Meru County are being encouraged to grow the crop despite a drop in prices. Governor Peter Munya said the county government has allocated funds for cooperatives and saccos and farmers need to take advantage of these and improve their farming skills and output.
“Uptake of the funds by the farmers is low. If farmers take up these funds and channel them improve their coffee farming they can increase their output,” he said while speaking at Imenti Central at a leaders forum.
Munya noted that during the March to September 2015, Meru coffee mill received 16,500 bags of coffee, which generated 7,500 bags of clean coffee after milling.
“Sh132 million which has already been disbursed to the coffee societies,” he said.
Farmers want NCPB branch opened in Kitale
BY CYNTHIA KOECH
Uasin Gishu farmers want the government to open a maize store in Kitale to speed up buying of the process from farmers. Kenya Farmers Association Uasin Gishu County chairman Kipkorir Arap Menjo said the process of buying maize from farmers was slow.
“I urge the national government through the ministry of agriculture to open an alternative NCPB store in a place like Mois Bridge and Kitale for farmers to take their produce in order to ease congestion,” he said. He urged the government to speed up buying maize from farmers, adding that some farmers have spent over two weeks queuing to deliver maize at the cereals and produce board.
He also urged the government to hire more staff.
Sh300 million roasting plant for Kiambu
BY STANLEY NJENGA
Sasini coffee mill in Kiambu will build a Sh 300 million plant to roast coffee beans. Sasini factory chairman Naushad Merali said they want to tap into value addition and sell their own coffee as a finished product. “Why should we sell our coffee abroad and then have it sold back to us and yet we complain of poor coffee prices. We will build our roaster so that our coffee will be sold directly in supermarkets and shops,” said Merali.
Merali said that the roaster will be installed next year at the Kiambu coffee mill and will be sourced from Brazil. “Coffee prices were down and were optimistic that they will increase if the company sells their coffee directly to buyers rather than using agents,” said Gerald Kimani, a Githunguri coffee farmer.