Famers in Siaya have been encouraged to venture into cultivation of sorghum as cash crop in order to improve their economic livelihoods.
Speaking when he met Sorghum famers and opinion leaders in Bondo Sub County, Siaya county Cereals Growers Association Field Extension Officer Mr Brian Etemesi told famers to grow the improved variety of sorghum for better returns.
Mr Etemesi said that through the Farm to Market alliance they have organized trade fares across the county starting February where famers will get holistic extension services about sorghum faming.
He said that famers will be trained and given access to farm inputs, variety of seeds and direct access to the market for their produce.
“Through the Farm to Market alliance we are targeting the Kenya Breweries Limited market in Kisumu. The famers should take advantage of the ready market where they will be paid within seven days after delivery,” Etemesi said.
The extension officer pointed out that they are currently promoting the three varieties of Gadam, Sila and advanta which have better yields in the region.
Etemesi who was flanked by Bondo sub county Agricultural Officer Mr Mike Ndubi disclosed that currently only 500 of acres of land in Siaya County are under sorghum yet the region has the potential of 5000 acres.
Mr Ndubi reiterated that the famers in the Bondo need to grow sorghum as cash crop alongside maize which is grown for subsistence because the area does not have any other cash crops.
The agricultural officer stated that the new variety of sorghum seeds are drought resistant and take shorter time to yield in addition to fetching better prices in the market compared to maize.
“Currently one can harvest more than 15 bags of sorghum from an acre of land selling each kilo for Sh. 32. This has better return than maize which is even more expensive to plant” he said.
By Brian Ondeng’