Kenya has hosted the 7th edition of the AGRITEC AFRICA international exhibition and conference geared towards educating farmers on the benefits of incorporating technology in their farming practices.
The exhibition held at the Kenyatta International Convention Centre (KICC) attracted 175 companies from 25 countries globally and hundreds of small scale and large scale farmers in Kenya.
Speaking at the event, Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries and Cooperatives Cabinet secretary (CS), Peter Munya, in a speech read on his behalf by the Chief Administrative Secretary (CAS), Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries, Lawrence Omuhaka, said that the government is committed to focus on Food and Nutrition security and Manufacturing that are under the Big 4 Agenda in order to avert food shortage crisis in the future.
Munya stated that the farmers and entrepreneurs in agriculture require technologies that provide energy in order to facilitate their activities and processes.
“The technologies being exhibited here will go a long way in helping the participants acquire knowledge and skills in various fields, including water harvesting, irrigation, land preparation and planting,” said Munya.
The CS disclosed that the government intends to generate over 200 million dollars annually in value additions from the Agro-processing sector.
He noted that Agriculture is a key pillar of the Kenyan economy that contributes to 33 per cent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and employs more than 40 per cent of the total population.
“The wider variety of local content from local exhibitors will make the forum favourable to our people with youthful farmers embracing innovative technologies in agriculture. Additionally, adoption of new farming methods will be accelerated thus contributing to the broad national objective of reducing hunger and increasing income of rural farmers,” Munya maintained.
He added that learning and sharing of the best technologies and practices that local farmers can adopt will increase productivity and income thus spurring growth in the agricultural sector.
At the same time, India’s High Commissioner to Kenya, Dr. Virander Paul stated that the effects of the covid-19 pandemic have not hindered innovators from coming up with technologies and products that will benefit farmers not only in Kenya but also globally.
Dr. Virander called upon the Kenyan and Indian governments to support farmers through such exhibitions and give them a platform to showcase their products.
By Moureen Wanjiru and Jedida Barasa