Pyrethrum Farmers To Benefit, Nyandarua
This comes as the Nyandarua county government allocates Ksh. 4.5 million in the 2013-2014 fiscal year towards procurement of seeds and seedling materials for farmers in all its 25 Wards to encourage them revive the sector.
This, according to the County Executive Committee member (CEC) in charge of Agriculture Mrs. Agatha Thuo is being done in a joint venture with HighChem Essentials to ensure that farmers are guaranteed of a ready market.
She said the county administration has laid down a strategy to ensure that farmers establish and increase the acreage which has gone down at the moment.
She said they have identified key players in the industry who will help the venture to work noting that farmers need to be assisted in acquiring certified planting materials for pyrethrum.
Mrs. Thuo said there was a ready market for the produce and hence there should be no cause to worry.
She made the remarks at Ndiara village in Kipipiri Sub County during a farmer’s field day and a ceremony also meant to re-launch the establishment of the crop again in the county.
She said planting materials will be distributed to the entire county beginning next week adding that identified farmer’s groups will be among the first beneficiaries.
The Agriculture CEC at the same time added that reviewed pyrethrum Act of 2013 has given way for new processors unlike in the past which was the monopoly of the Pyrethrum Board of Kenya (PBK).
In this regard, she said HighChem Essential has partnered with the Nyandarua County Government in assisting farmers address the challenges facing them.
She called on the Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Felix Koskei give licenses to more players noting that the loyalty of processing and marketing its products abroad remains the with PBK and hence time has come for more processes to be brought on board and ensure healthy competition.
HighChem Essential Managing Director Dr. Wachira Maina noted that farmers had in the past been disillusioned and disappointed.
He said the company was set to play key role in the supply of seeds and planting materials adding that it will also be ready to purchase the crop from farmers and process pyrethrine.
Dr. Wachira said a processing factory has already been established with a capacity of 24 tonnes per day adding that once all these processes kicks off, they want every farmer into it with full knowledge.
He said HighChem has identified Nyandarua and Nakuru Counties as pilot project saying this will be expanded to other pyrethrum producing areas soon.
He said the company was now targeting over 4,000 farmers in the region to kick off it operation saying the region is known for producing the crop with high pyrethrine content.
Kipipiri Ward member of County Assembly (MCA) Michael Kirumba said a new day has come for Nyandaruans saying there was a need to maximize its produce.
He said any budget brought in the County Assembly to support farmers must be supported to ensure they are economically empowered.
Kirumba also encouraged young people to venture in the crop production.
In the recent past, revival of the pyrethrum industry in most parts of the country among them Nyandarua, Narok and Nakuru regions has been the main agenda from the players.
By Maureen Murimi