HASS AVOCADO IN BARINGO COUNTY
Farmers have been urged to diversify in their agricultural activities in order to benefit from the marketing opportunities created by the government and its stakeholders.
One of the opportunities which Kenyan farmers can benefit from is the direct export of horticultural crops particularly Hass Avocados that has high demand in Europe and USA.
Baringo County Governor H. E. Stanley Kiptis with Principal Secretary State department for Irrigation Prof Fred Segor launched the continuous distribution of Hass avocados to various registered farmers in Baringo County at Perkerra Irrigation scheme-Marigat and Kabarbet area of Kabartonjo Ward.
H.E Kiptis urged farmers to embrace the crop variety saying it has been proven to have higher pricing index like Macadamia compared to other crops.
County government will support farmers acquire free seedlings, subsidized agrochemicals and provide technical support to ensure that farmers get value for their money through value addition thus making them economically stable.
The governor anticipated that his administration is also focusing on other sectors like dairy, honey, coffee as well as carry out value addition on livestock products.
Prof. Segor revealed that the government is targeting to support farmers grow 3million Hass Avocado seedlings and one million Macadamia in the next two years.
According to the PS, the government is not only striving to address food security agenda but to meet the direct export market demand after President Uhuru Kenyatta signed a bilateral trade agreement with China for Kenya to export Hass Avocados.
It is estimated that the venture gives a farmer an annual income returns of Ksh 400,000/- per acre in the recommended ecological zones if good crop husbandry is practiced.
This affruitation programme is specifically aimed at reducing over dependency on one crop, and help farmers to be economically stable and make our county the county of plenty food.
In a move to upscale food security efforts, the County government of Baringo has handed over more than 270 Galla goats to residents of Barwessa Ward in Baringo North Sub County.
The Goats that were distributed across the Ward with each sub location receiving 27 goats, which targets the vulnerable in the society in order to improve their livelihoods.
While officially handing over the livestock, Governor H.E Stanley Kiptis stated that, under his administration’s resilience programme, it will help in improving the livestock breeds in the lower parts of the County.
“These improved breeds will fetch higher prizes compared to indigenous ones thus creating wealth for our farmers,” said the Governor.
Another focus that Kiptis revealed is giving out doper sheep and Sahiwal cattle breeds that can adapt to harsh climatic conditions frequently experienced in these areas.
Residents could not hide their joy while receiving the goats saying that County government should increase the number to accommodate more beneficiaries.
Also at Marigat in Baringo south sub county, the county government has continued to enhance its effortsof improving livestock production by providing quality breeds.
|H.E Governor Stanley Kiptis handing over one of the galla goats to a local farmer in Barwesa Ward.|
The department of Agriculture and livestock distributed 10 two-year old Sahiwal bulls to farmers groups to improve livestock productivity in the county.
CEC for Agriculture, Dr Richard Rotich said the distribution will improve livestock productivity in the identified areas of Kabarnet and Kapropita Wards in Baringo Central, Barwessa and Saimo Soi Wards in Baringo North, Ripkwo Kositei and Kollowa Wards in Tiaty, Emining and Mogotio Wards as well as Marigat and Ilchamus Wards in Baringo South.
"Our department will follow up the beneficiaries and ensure that the ten bulls are well taken care of until the time the project becomes sustainable," said Dr. Rotich.
He noted that the breeds are adaptable in the lower parts the County and are highly resilient to drought where water and pastures are inadequate.
Farmers who benefited from the program have expressed their gratitude towards County government for coming up with such a noble program which will improve their livelihoods.
They promised to take good care of the bulls which will they believe will enhance their economic livelihoods.
Coffee Farming in Baringo
Coffee beingKenya’s fourth-leading foreign exchange earner after tourism, tea and horticulture, this makes it a very valuable venture and thrives well in most parts of Rift valley because of its rich volcanic soil.
Coffee production in Baringo County has proved yielding and profitable considering the rich, fertile and the landscape with hillslopes and gentle slopes, which has ensured well-drained and aerated soil, which is favourable for coffee production.
In a bid to upscale its productivity, the county government has put in more efforts in capacity building coffee farmers, more recently, distributing 28,000 coffee seedlings, and pulping machines to farmers, which has in turn increased the area under coffee from 850ha to the current 2,500ha.
The county government has continued supporting the sector by providing coffee seedlings and rehabilitating coffee factories considering that currently, Coffee has a higher pricing index compared to other crops.
More so, in order to curb the in fluctuating market prices and competition, Baringo county government has secured a direct coffee export to South Korea, which has helped farmers to have a ready market and do away with middlemen and brokers who have for so long ripped them off their hard-earned produce.
Last year, Baringo County exported coffee worth 10.6 million shillings to Korea and its target this year is to have over 30 million shillings worth of exportand this can be achieved only if farmers embrace new methods of farming.
Although, coffee farmers face few challenges,through the county department of agriculture, the county government has provided extension officers in every ward to advice farmers on better methods of coffee farming.
County government begins countywide vaccination against Foot and Mouth, PPR and Rabies
A vaccination against Foot and Mouth, Paste Petis de Ruminaurs (PPR) and Rabies has been launched across all 517 vaccination centres in Baringo.
CEC for Agriculture Dr Richard Rotich who presided over the exercisein Moigutwo in Bartabwa ward, Baringo North Sub County stated that the exercise will run for a month and is targeting 750,000 goats and Sheep, 100,000 cattle as well as 2,000 dogs, cats, donkeys and camels within the region.
Dr Rotich noted that the vaccination is free of charge and encouraged livestock farmers to turn up in the designated vaccination sites in order to vaccinate their animals against the trans- boundary diseases which in the recent past has led to loss of livestock in the region.
“I am encouraging our farmers to take advantage of the free vaccination so that their animals are vaccinated against foot and mouth, PPR and rabies diseases,” said the CEC for Agriculture.
He said the vaccination will ensure increased animal production and minimize cost incurred in treatment of livestock diseases in case of an outbreak.
County director of veterinary services Dr John Wameyorevealed that the exercise was undertaken as a measure of preventing the spread of livestock diseases to younger animals who were not vaccinated during the last exercise.
|A Vetinary officer during vaccination drive against Foot and Mouth, PPR and rabies in Kimorok, Baringo South Sub County.|
Dr Wameyo who was accompanied by County Chief Officer for Livestock Isaack Ndirangu and County pastoral livelihoods and resilience team leader Laban Labatt stated that prevalence rate of such diseases is high in West Pokot, Turkana, Baringo, Samburu and Laikipia countieshence it is important for the livestock to be vaccinated in order to minimize mortality rate in the North Rift region.
The program under the World Bank is being conducted by county government department of livestock through the regional pastoral livelihood resilience programme in collaboration with the national government.
CEC’s and CO’s signs performance contract
County Executive Committee Members (CECs) and Chief Officers have signed performance contracts in a bid to improve service delivery.
H.E governor Stanley Kiptis who presided the function for CEC’s at Kabarnet lauded the process saying that it will enable county government manage its operations in a systematic manner.
“The performance contracts is crucial because it will enable us achieve our goals and targets in our quest to transform the livelihoods of our people,” he said.
Governor Kiptis said his administration has developed a county integrated development plan (CIDP) to be fully implemented within the next five years to the various departments implement the targeted activities as per the annual development plan.
The county boss added that the performance contact will improve budgeting process since the county budget will be approved within the stipulated timeframes.
The same is also set to be extended down to other employees in all cadres for them to be aligned to the performance targets that have been set.
The process will also help county leadership track down its performance indicators and ensure the public are at all times getting the services they are seeking.
|H.E governor Stanley Kiptis presiding over the signing of performance contracts for CEC’s at Kabarnet.|
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