Nakuru County government has distributed 350,000 seedlings to pyrethrum farmers in Kuresoi North and South sub-counties in a bid to boost its production.
According to the area Agriculture CEC, Immaculate Maina this was achieved through partnership between the county government and Agriculture and Food Authority (AFA- Miraa), Pyrethrum and other Industrial Crops Directorate (MPICD), Karlo and Kephis to enable the farmers get access to quality planting materials that will in turn give good yields to meet the increasing demand of this product.
Maina who was speaking during a stakeholder’s collaborative meeting, noted that the farmers will benefit from access to information, good farming methods, identifying and recruiting of more pyrethrum farmers, research, networking, and extension services among others from this noble cause.
Currently, the county has an estimated 3000 acres of planted pyrethrum and are aiming at achieving their full potential by putting 30,000 acres under pyrethrum.
Since the onset of the pyrethrum revival project, she noted that most farmers are embracing the once vibrant sector and have been able to sell 480MT of dried flowers to the tune of Sh 96 million. With this, she affirmed that the county government will continue to offer its support to see to it that more opportunities are explored in this sector.
The Nakuru-based Pyrethrum Processing Company (PPCK) is paying Sh200- Sh 250 for each kilogram of pyrethrum flowers delivered at the processing plant.
Maina urged farmers to utilize the pyrethrum farmers platforms that will help come up with lasting solutions in addressing issues affecting the sector.
The county government has distributed over 57 million seedlings to 7000 beneficiaries since the start of the program and in this financial year, Sh 50 million has been set aside for the purchase of high quality planting material.
The Agriculture Cabinet Secretary, Peter Munya during a consultative forum with pyrethrum farmers in Molo sub-county said that the national government had released Sh 40 million to purchase pyrethrum seedlings for farmers in the 18 high potential counties to help revamp the sector.
Pyrethrum is processed to obtain pyrethrin; a key ingredient in manufacturing pesticides and insecticides.
By Emily Kadzo