• The government said it will purchase at least 1 million bags of maize to be maintained as part of the country's Strategic Food Reserve.
• Besides the purchase of maize at a fair price, the Cabinet also directed the Ministry of Agriculture to provide mobile driers to farmers to tame post-harvest losses.
Maize farmers will know at what price the government will purchase their maize this year in due course.
A dispatch that followed a Cabinet meeting held on Tuesday says the Ministry of Agriculture will announce the off-take price upon the conclusion of consultations with stakeholders.
"Additionally, and in keeping with the imperative to realize Food Security; Cabinet authorized the operationalization of the newly promulgated Strategic Food Reserve Regulations, 2023. Under the framework, the government will purchase at least 1 million bags of maize to be maintained as part of our nation’s Strategic Food Reserve."
The meeting held at the Kakamega State Lodge and chaired by President William Ruto agreed that farmers must get a fair price for their produce.
Last year, the government capped the price of a 90kg bag of maize at Sh5,600.
Besides the purchase of maize at a fair price, the Cabinet also directed the Ministry of Agriculture to provide mobile driers to farmers to tame post-harvest losses and further sanctioned the expedited implementation of the Warehouse Receipting System.
A warehouse receipt system (WRS) enables farmers to deposit their grains in exchange for a warehouse receipt to avert losses that may be occasioned by poor storage.
The Cabinet noted that maize farmers are this year expecting a bumper harvest owing to the subsidised fertiliser they received last year at a cost of Sh2,500 per bag.
In cognizance of the short rain season, the Cabinet approved the framework for enhanced production and distribution of certified seeds to farmers.
This will see county governments provide grassroots supply outlets where registered farmers will easily access certified seeds.
The government called on farmers who didn't register themselves during the first wave to take advantage of the fresh ongoing enumeration exercise in order to benefit from subsidy and seed programme.
"The meeting also approved the partnership between the National Cereals and Produce Board (NCPB) and County Governments for “Last Mile” distribution of subsidised government fertiliser that is retailing at Sh2,500," the dispatch said.