More than 3,000 small-holder potatoes farmers from Nakuru are set to benefit from a Sh127 million program aimed at enhancing potato production in the county. The program, being implemented under the National Agricultural Rural Inclusive and Growth Project (NARIGP) by the Ministry of Agriculture, will incorporate promoting mechanized farming of the crop, development of high-quality planting material and establishment of a cold storage facility.
County NARIGP Coordinator Peter Githunguri explained that the initiative had adopted intensive mechanization. Increasing mechanized farming is the best way to overcome post-harvest losses, as it saves time and money. He added that the project would also entail promoting of new farming technologies for breeding multiple disease-free and high yielding seed, as a way of unlocking the over Sh15 billion potential of potato farming in the county.
As that Kenya’s potato seed demand stands at 30,000 tons annually, Githunguri said it was unfortunate that the country only produces 6,700 tons, with most farmers recycling crops from the previous season to use as seed, a move he blamed for the perennial shortage that has been afflicting the country.
[ Sh100 =€0.83 ]