A community based organizing Integrated Community Organization on Sustainable Empowerment and Education for Development (ICOSEED) have come up with a strategic plan meant to revolutionize peasant farming to commercial based agriculture.
Agri-based farming will involve the introduction of pig keeping; horticultural produce as well as improved zero grazing on small sized plots for maximum utilization.
Speaking at Kutus, the managing director ICOSEED), Patrick Muriuki said although land size was still an issue, the available one was enough for commercialized agriculture.
“One does not have to own 10 acres of land to venture into pig farming as all what is required is a small plot to keep the animals,” he noted.
Muriuki said the same plot can accommodate hundreds of poultry which when disposed of could fetch a huge amount of income to the respective farmer.
He said Kirinyaga County has abundant unexploited water resources which if harnessed productively, could provide the much needed irrigation farming to enable the farmers carry out farming throughout the year.
“In this County, we have many rivers and streams whose high water volumes just flow and get wasted in the Indian Ocean and as leaders and professionals, we are warming up to ensuring water reservoirs are constructed to harness the resource and use it to improve food production,” adding; “We are also engaging farmers to adhere to guidelines given by agricultural extension officers.”
Muriuki said non adherence to instructions given by experts has been identified as the major cause for declining food production in Kirinyaga County.
“This is to encourage farmers to carry out an organized farming with profit in mind rather than carrying out farming with no economic goal in mind,” Muriuki explained.
He said the right use of fertilizer for the right crops if adhered to will increase the farmer’s earnings by a double digit, contrary to what has been happening before where farmers result to using any available fertilizer with little or no regard for the ingredients.
“Some farmers have been using fertilizer number 1717 which is more expensive and with less absorption rate thus making their produce expensive for nothing,” Muriuki said.
By Irungu Mwangi