The Siaya County government is supporting the expansion of traditional vegetable production to boost food security and enhance income accruing to families.
The County CEC for Agriculture, Dr. Elizabeth Odhiambo said vegetable seeds are being distributed to farmer groups free of charge and added demonstration plots for the crops have been established near water pans dug by the county government in arid areas.
Dr. Odhiambo said the County had great potential for increasing production because of suuitable soils and availability of plenty of water from streams and rivers across the land.
In an interview with KNA, the CEC said increased production would give families continuous supply of nutritious vegetables and enable them earn income when they sell the surplus, even beyond the area.
“The demand for traditional vegetables is on the increase, because many people are being advised by medics to consume them for health reasons,” said the CEC Odhiambo, adding Hospitals also buy the vegetables in large quantities as part of the diet supplement for patients.
The seeds being issued free of charge to farmers were for Black Night Shade, Spider plant, Clotalaria , Jews mallow and Amaranth which are known locally as osuga, akeyo, muto,apoth and omboga respectively.
Dr. Odhiambo said even those far from water bodies can still grow the vegetables by irrigating their farms using water from wells.
“Those willing to expand production of the vegetables are required to register at their local agriculture offices,” said the Dr. Odhiambo, adding that so far 1,350 sachets of seeds have been issued and six demonstration plots established.
By Paul Olale