By Francis Mwema, January 6, 2022
Only Kenyan farmers registered through the national farmer database will be issued with subsidized fertilizer. This was affirmed by the Ministry of Agriculture which urged farmers to take the initiative of being enrolled into the e voucher system program.
Earlier this week, the Ministry of Agriculture while opening a farmer trainer of trainer’s workshop at the Kenya school of government said the registration exercise will be free and voluntary.
The government seeks to inform policies on subsidy programs and strengthen the e voucher system as it seeks to map out specific farmers needs to minimize wastage of resources and carry out effective pest and diseases management systems as the government ramp up its food security efforts.
The registration initiative comes in earnest to help tame pr evious malpractices which were witnessed in the distribution of subsidiary fertilizer that included infiltration by non-beneficiaries and unscrupulous traders who accessed and resold the subsidized fertilizers at higher prices.
The registration will be done at the county level and sent to National Cereals and Produce Board for the farmers to access the fertilizer. It was explained that the move will help manage the distribution of fertilizer at the grassroots to ensure no one takes advantage of the process.
The national database for farmers will include identity, profile, location, and crop acreage and fertilizer requirements among others.
However, numerators and administrators have been directed to adhere to the data law provisions during the registration exercise.
The government unveiled the plan as it sought to help farmers and ensure the country produces sufficient food produce to achieve food security. The President had directed that 1.4 million bags of fertilizer be availed to farmers at a maximum subsidized price of Ksh 3,500 per 50kg bag down from Ksh 6500, as part of the Government’s interventions to address the high cost of living.
Meanwhile, Cereal Growers Association is calling on farmers and stakeholders in the agricultural sector to turn up in numbers and grace this year’s farmer’s show at Purko Sheep Ranch, Mau Narok. The show which is under a theme Crop Rotation for Enhanced Agricultural Productivity will be held on 12th of this month.
The show will also be meant to bring together commercial cereal farmers to promote collective action for the sustained improvement of their farming enterprises and in addressing industry challenges in Kenya.
Key highlights during the show will include Rotation program showcasing for Barley, Peas and Canola as a best practice to improve on quality yields and soil structure. It will also include a showcase on what is currently commercialized and what to expect in future.
Farmers from all parts of the country have been invited and will not be required to pay any fee to gain entrance into the show.
The Cereal growers association which has been in existence for the last decade pushes for facilitation in responsible management of pest control solutions for improved agricultural production, public health, & environment protection.
Since its inception, the association trained over 2,500 small scale farmers from select counties including Kitui, Embu and Makueni on Good Agricultural Practices, Climate Smart Agriculture and agri-entrepreneurship.