The Chief Administrative Secretary (CAS) for Petroleum and Mining, Dr Eng. John Mosonik, has urged farmers in Bomet County to consider diversification and value chain approach, as the most strategic ways of maximizing profits from agricultural ventures.
Mosonik, while speaking at Merigi Trading Centre in Bomet East, said agricultural sector has remained unattractive source of employment due to low income resulting from low prices often set by unscrupulous middle men whom he said have dominated the sector.
He said many farmers have delved into one venture, especially tea growing while leaving out other equally profitable crops such as avocados, saying by diversifying into other crops, farmers would be cushioned from price fluctuation, usually experienced in the tea sector.
He said the dwindling farming economy resulted chiefly from mono-cropping that has usually exposed farmers to an array of pests and diseases, leading to massive losses while drastically raising the cost production to unmanageable levels.
The CAS said the County Government of Bomet, should strive to educate farmers on diversification while value chain approach would enable sectors, including dairy to process milk into various finished products that would fetch better prices.
“Milk produced in Bomet is sold at Sh. 30 per liter and the same is processed in Nairobi and will later hit the shelves tagged with very high prices,” he said. ” We in Bomet County would harness those profits by establishment of our own processing plant and by so doing our farmers will reap maximum profits,” he added.
The CAS observed that while unemployment’s remains prevalent among the youths, revamping agricultural sector would provide an end to endless search for the scarce white collar Jobs.
Mosonik further urged the County Governments of Kericho and Bomet to end tussle over water, saying the issues regarding non-payment of bills ought to be settled at the management level, to allow the residents enjoy unlimited supply of the precious commodity.
By Kipngeno Korir