A Thika based Macadamia Nut Company is set to benefit its members from 10 counties with an affordable housing scheme.
Through its Super Cluster Housing Scheme, Jungle Nut Ltd is targeting its over 100, 000 members to have affordable houses.
While addressing the press during Jungle Nut workshop in Embu, the company’s Chief Executive Officer, Patrick Wainaina said small clusters in the counties would form a super cluster in each of the 10 counties, acquire a plot and construct a five- storey building for its members.
“The Jungle Nut is geared towards supporting the government in attaining the big four agenda by ensuring affordable houses for its members,” Wainaina observed.
The CEO who is also the MP Thika Town Constituency, noted that the scheme would be facilitated by the saving scheme of the company for its members which now stands at Sh.100 million.
“The company is not only focusing on the housing scheme but also in helping its members to save for easy access to loans through their Saccos,” he added.
The legislator who is also known as Wainaina wa Jungle urged the government to reintroduce the services of agricultural extension officers which are much needed in boosting food security in the country.
He said due to lack of services of extension officers, the company has employed over 300 extension officers to advise macadamia farmers on best farming practices for maximum production.
“The government should think of reintroducing services of extension officers and establishment of research stations to boost the macadamia nuts farming which last year realized Sh.15 billion for the country,” noted the legislator.
He lamented the exploitation of macadamia nut farmers by brokers who bought the nuts at very low price but however noted that his company has dealt with the problem by buying the nuts directly from the farmers.
“The brokers approach the farmers with low prices even half the market price and sell to nut companies at higher prices hence exploiting the farmers,” he added.
He urged other nut buying companies to avoid brokers and buy nuts directly from the farmers so as to avoid exploitation of the farmers and theft of the nuts.
A macadamia farmer from Meru County, Julieta Kimanga appreciated the Jungle Nut Company for coming to their rescue from exploitation of brokers. She said through the company, they were now able to educate their children and save for their old age.
The annual workshop had brought together nut farmers’ representatives from 10 counties which included Kirinyaga, Embu, Meru and Murang’a among others.
By Kimani Tirus