The annual Agricultural Society of Kenya (ASK) trade fair in Nakuru County resumes in two weeks’ time after two years lull due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
This is after the Ministry of Health approved modalities, including protocols that will guide the staging of the show.
ASK Nakuru Branch Council Member Margaret Anami said the exhibition will be held at its traditional venue at the Show Grounds near Level 5 Teaching and Referral Hospital.
To boost security ahead of the trade fair which will take place from June 29 to July 3 the management has pledged to install CCTV cameras at the main entrance and around the venue.
This comes as the ASK begins partial resumption of the agricultural events which are popular with farmers, students, children and other participants across the country. ASK has so far hosted the exhibition at Eldoret in Uasin Gishu and Meru Counties.
“We have been out of the exhibitions for the last two years because of Covid-19. We anticipate a bigger number of participants at the Nakuru show,” she stated.
In the past two years the venue has been hosting alternative activities to the shows and trade fairs such as farmers’ field days.
She said, as a measure to contain the spread of coronavirus, exhibitors will be required to adopt open space displays, adding that ASK would help them set up structures that do not promote crowding in line with global exhibition standards.
Ms. Anami indicated that during the event ASK will adopt cashless payments to minimise physical interactions where adults will pay Sh250 while children will part with Sh200.
160 exhibitors are expected to show case their innovations, technologies, products and services to the public.
The society says both exhibitors and visitors will now be required to register on its online portal.
“The society wishes to emphasise that no physical cash transaction will be accepted at the entrance of the showground,” added the Council Member.
According to Ms. Anami the show whose theme is “Promoting innovation and technology in Agriculture and trade” is expected to attract up to 500,000 visitors, including farmers, students, the general public and entrepreneurs.
“Though Covid-19 pandemic has hit most businesses hard, we are glad to have both local and some regional exhibitors from Tanzania and Uganda. We urge farmers to turn up in large numbers. We are happy that we were granted a go-ahead to host the show this year,” she added.
Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Peter Munya is expected to grace the trade fair on Friday, July 1, while Nakuru Governor Lee Kinyanjui will preside over the event as the county patron on Saturday, July 2.
Mr. Kinyanjui said that there is need to adopt modern technologies and innovations in agriculture and trade as reflected in the theme of the event.
“We are appealing to farmers and entrepreneurs with innovative business ideas to take part in this premier event which provides a favourable platform for the display of technology and innovations and boosts food security as stipulated in the government’s Big Four Agenda,” noted the Governor.
The sectors which have attracted the majority of the exhibitors include agriculture, livestock, fisheries, horticulture, seed companies, trade, finance, transport, manufacturing, universities and tertiary institutions.
Others will be showcasing their innovations in the motor industry, textile, public sector, hospitality, research, health and insurance among others.
By Jane Ngugi and Agnes Kerubo