The Kenya Animal Genetic Resource Centre (KAGREC) on Monday donated 1,000 doses of high quality semen for dairy and beef cattle to West Pokot County government.
The organization further donated 30 Artificial Insemination (AI) containers to cooperative groups in the area.
Speaking in Kapenguria on after the donation, the KAGREC Managing Director (MD), Dr. David Kios said the centre had decided to partner with the county to help in improving livestock breeds in the region.
Kios said the semen they had donated was of high quality and any offspring dairy cattle would be able to produce over 50 litres of milk on a daily basis.
“These are breeds that we have done research on and we have found out that they can withstand climatic conditions of this region and with proper care, cattle can produce 50 litres per day,” he said.
The MD said the organization would sponsor a field day in the county which would be preceded by a three day capacity building of farmers in modern day farming practices.
On the Nasukuta modern slaughter house, Kios said the centre was working closely with the county government to ensure that the facility had enough supply of animals.
“Before the slaughter house becomes operational, we want to help the county to ensure farmers have enough animals to supply to the facility for slaughtering,” he said.
The modern slaughter house was started by the National government and spent about Sh.120 million before handing over to the county government on March 2017. Over 90 per cent of the building’s works are complete which include the main slaughter house.
He said they would donate 50 bulls in the region to help in improving beef production in the region.
“It only takes two years for beef animals to be ready for sale and farmers will reap huge profits from the venture,” he said.
The area Governor, Prof.John Lonyangapuo who received the donation said his administration would work closely with the centre as the county gears up to establish a milk processing plant.
“My heartfelt gratitude to the KAGREC for their support and my government will work with them closely as we are on the process of setting up a milk processing plant in the area. At the same time, we should ensure that we have enough supply before setting up any industry in the area,” he said.
Prof. Lonyangapuo said his administration wants to see to it that any cartels or middlemen who exploited farmers from the region by buying their produce at a throw away price are eradicated.
“Middlemen have been a major problem to the farmer and the only way of eradicating is by setting up processing plants and forming cooperatives. This will ensure that farmers reap huge profits from their produce,” said the governor.
By John Saina