•Governor Anyang Nyong’o says centre will address the growing demand in dairy subsector
•Government has embarked on promotion of dairy products to support the project
The Kisumu county government is working with development partners to build a Sh123 million dairy centre.
The centre will be constructed at Ombeyi in Muhoroni under collaboration between Kisumu, the International Livestock Research Institute and the United States Agency for International Development.
Governor Anyang Nyong’o said the centre will address the growing demand in the dairy subsector.
Nyong’o, while delivering county state address speech on Friday at Tom Mboya Labour College, said his administration was focused on agriculture and food security.
He said they are developing the dairy sub-sector, increasing rice productivity, re-invigorating the fisheries value chain.
Nyong'o said the government has embarked on aggressive promotion of dairy products to support sustainability of the project.
The support includes distribution of dairy animals to the farmers in high potential areas and establishment of fodder and pasture plots, he said.
“Our anchor dairy project in Muhoroni - Osiepe Milk Chilling plant - has opened great opportunities for dairy farming in Muhoroni,” Nyong’o said.
He said the county procured and distributed 87 dairy cows and 66 dairy goats worth Sh9.5 million to farmer cooperatives in Koru/Muhoroni, North Kisumu, Ahero and South East Nyakach wards in the last financial year 2018-19.
“We are strengthening dairy co-operative societies by providing them with milk coolers to enable milk cooling and storage,” the county boss said.
He noted that the rice subsector is a key component of the county’s food security agenda yet productivity remains low due to poor varieties and poor crop husbandry.
“Our farmers are exposed to exploitation from middlemen who cart away our rice across our borders for lack of value addition opportunities at home,” he added.
Nyong’o said they have signed a Sh175 million MoU with the Japan International Cooperation Agency and the National Irrigation Board that will address challenges facing farmers.
The five-year program will see the introduction of modern agronomic methods and market resilient breeds in Ahero and West Kano irrigation schemes.
Under the tripartite arrangement, Kisumu has mobilised and distributed 2,940kg of Arize rice variety and 400 bags of fertiliser besides deploying county technical staff to the project.
He said the other key-value addition project in the agricultural sector is rice milling in collaboration with the National Irrigation Board and JICA.
“This financial year, we advance value addition projects in tomato processing at Kochieng’ and milk processing as forwarding linkages for the milk chilling plants across the county,” he said.