Farmers in counties that experience enough rainfall have been called upon to plant suitable crops and produce extra food to support counties that are experiencing drought. Farmers in the Counties of Bungoma, Kakamega, Busia and Trans-Nzoia were asked to use the available rainfall and plant crops that fit the present climate.
Speaking to the press on Monday during World Food Day, Isaac Arupt Juma, Chief Officer of Livestock and Fisheries also the acting chief officer for Agriculture, Irrigation and Cooperatives in Bungoma County said that many counties in Kenya are facing hunger asking those in counties with enough foodstuffs to support them. “We have heard of how our people are dying due to hunger. I ask you to use the available resources and produce more food so that we can help them,” he said. Mr Juma added that the western region experiences a favourable climate for farming.
“We have established milk coolers in almost every ward that farmers of the said ward take the milk and get paid after their milk is used to produce yoghurt and many more milk products,”- Isaac Arupt Juma
“Bungoma is very lucky as it receives enough rainfall for farming, let us use this climate to produce surplus food that can be transported to other drought-hit counties,” he said. He says that with the high cost of farm inputs and the hard economic condition many farmers in Bungoma are unable to raise funds and purchase farm inputs thus threatening the food security in the county.
He addressed the insufficient farm inputs issue to farmers adding that the Bungoma county government has plans of distributing subsidy farm inputs to farmers. “We have had the program where small-scale farmers are supplied with free farm inputs and tractors for ploughing at affordable rates,” he affirmed. He added that the county also has subsidized Artificial insemination (AI) in aals so that quality and enough milk can be produced, adding that the milk produced by farmers can be taken to milk coolers that are in various wards within Bungoma County for sale.
“We have established milk coolers in almost every ward that farmers of the said ward take the milk and get paid after their milk is used to produce yoghurt and many more milk products,” Arupt noted. He noted that the Bungoma County government is working under this year’s theme ‘Save food for health tomorrow’ calling on NGOs supporting farming to work with the Bungoma county government to ensure that there is food security. He also asked farmers to embrace planting traditional foodstuffs like cassava and sweet potatoes.
By Brown Wafula