by Robert Manyara
KITALE (Xinhua) -- A two-day farmers’
forum kicked off on Thursday in Kenya’s northwest region,
focusing on the adoption of new technologies to boost yields.
The meeting, organized by the East African Grain Council (EAGC),
a regional lobby for cereal farmers, comes amid concern over
diminishing returns in the country’s grain sector occasioned by
high tax regimes on inputs and machinery as compared to other
East African countries whose cost is lower.
In his opening remarks, Gerald Masila, EAGC’s executive
officer, welcomed a move by the government to enact a law to
legalize the use of the warehouse receipt system, saying it will
offer farmers access to credit facilities as collateral.
"Kenya remains high in cost of production and taxes in
comparison to Tanzania and Uganda which have lower taxes. This
disadvantage farmers in Kenya with an increased balance of
payment is owing to growing importation," Masila told farmers in
He said the warehouse receipt Act will see all warehouses
licensed to be operational.
This will be useful for farmers within this sector who face
difficulties when seeking for financial aid owing to ambiguous
A warehouse receipt system (WRS) enables farmers to deposit
storable goods (usually grains or coffee) in exchange for a
warehouse receipt (WR).
A warehouse receipt is a document issued by warehouse
operators as evidence that specified commodities of stated
quantity and quality have been deposited at a particular
The county government of Trans Nzoia challenged farmers in
the region to take advantage of new measures put in place by the
devolved unit to reduce the cost of production through new
technologies like conservation Agriculture.
"We challenge our farmers to embrace new technological
advancements which reduce the cost of production while improving
the financial returns as opposed to obsolete technologies," said
the county’s executive committee member for Agriculture and
Livestock Mary Nzomo.
Nzomo also challenged grain farmers to embrace the
cooperative model of business to have the muscle to access
better markets with the county government having set up measures
to revamp the department.
Dry spell combined with
many negative human
activities put more Kenyan rivers on 'death bed'
by Bedah Mengo NAIROBI (Xinhua) --
A dry, cracked and desolate sunken bed
is what is left at the place where the waters of a tributary of
River Athi, south of Kenya’s capital Nairobi, once flowed.
It is months since residents saw water flow in the river,
which initially was always full that the government had to
upgrade a lower bridge that crossed it.