Kirinyaga County manufactures affordable feeds for poultry farmers
One of the major challenges facing poultry farmers in Kenya today is lack of access to quality and affordable animal feeds.
The high cost of feeds leading to high cost of production has driven many farmers out of trade after realizing that they can only make little or no profits from the trade.
The County Government of Kirinyaga has however come to the rescue of poultry farmers who have been mostly affected by high cost of quality feeds that has been making their eggs less competitive in the market.
Through Kirinyaga Agricultural Training Center animal production unit, the county is manufacturing quality chicken feeds for distribution to farmers engaged in a project in which the county is producing over one million eggs a month.
Apart from saving farmers from high cost of production, the feeds initiative is also aimed at shielding them from acquiring substandard feeds from unscrupulous dealers which can turn affect the quality of the eggs produced thereby reducing their marketability.
While launching the one million eggs project, Governor Anne Waiguru said that the feeds factory, which is located in Kiaga, plays a major role in the success of the eggs project since the enlisted farmers are guaranteed quality source of feeds.
She said that the county government has provided free feeds to 32 community groups involved in first phase of the eggs project for the first six months of the project. There after the farmers will buy the feeds from the factory at a subsidized cost.
The governor said that the current production capacity at the factory stands at about 220 bags of 70kgs chicken feeds daily. So far the factory has produced around 13,000 bags. She noted that there are plans to expand the factory’s production capacity in order to accommodate farmers who have been incorporated in the second phase of the egg project and with time it will be big enough to sell feeds to other farmers across the county.
The subsidized feeds not only reduce the cost of egg production but also saves farmers from getting substandard feeds from unscrupulous dealers.
Before the factory started producing the County Government, through the Department of Agriculture, Livestock, Veterinary and Fisheries, ensured that the feed formulation was analyzed and certified by the relevant animal feeds analysis and assurance agencies before being certified by the Kenya Bureau of Standards (KEBS).
The feeds are a combination of well blended carbohydrates, proteins, minerals and vitamins with some of the main ingredients being maize and omena. To avoid toxins the factory uses well dried ingredients only.
The governor noted that farmers and the people working at the factory have been well education on proper storage, stock management and effective pest control in the feeds. The factory is big enough to handle all the raw materials as well as the finished products as well as adequate loading and offloading space.
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