Government to start buying maize next week
The government will from next week, start purchasing maize from farmers across the country at a cost of Ksh.3,200 per 90Kg bag.
The move, first announced by President Uhuru Kenyatta last week, is expected to stabilise maize flour prices in the country which had shot up beginning of the year. This forced the government to subsidise the prices to Ksh.90 per packet of maize flour.
Speaking at Kilimo house, Agriculture Cabinet Secretary, Willy Bett said that the latest assessment of the staple crop is showing better performance than anticipated.
“The ministry has revised the performance of the second season crop and it is projecting a long-term average of 40 million bags,” he said.
Bett added that the poor maize production in the country experienced in the previous year was attributed to Fall army-worms that attacked maize crops in high potential areas and affected the cost of production.
Further, the CS lauded President Uhuru Kenyatta’s remarks during the Nairobi Trade Fair, that the government has set aside Ksh.6 billion to purchase maize from local farmers under the Strategic Food Reserve (SFR).
“The Government will buy under the Strategic Food Reserve, all the maize offered for sale by our farmers during this 2017/18 season. For this purpose, we have programmed to spend Sh6 billion,” said Mr. Kenyatta.
The government will maintain the subsidy maize program until the local maize market stabilises.
The ministry is optimistic that the second season crop will do better this year owing to rain distribution, which is between normal and above normal rainfall especially in Kitale and Uasin Gishu.
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