The government is set to register all coffee farmers in the country in an effort to revamp the poorly paying sector, Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Mwangi Kiunjuri has said.
Kiunjuri said the move was meant to enable the government to plan effectively on how to provide them with the farm subsidies they required to improve their crop.
In a program to make the country food sufficient, the government is also set to provide farmers with certified seeds for the various crops farmers grow.
He said it is now a policy that all seeds and seedlings for both subsistence and cash crops supplied to the farmers must be the certified ones in order to realize quality and quantity.
"As from the coming short rains , we will be supplying our farmers with 11 million certified coffee, macadamia, cashew nuts, tea and sugar seedlings since the government has realized poor quality ones were responsible for the decline in agricultural production," he said.
Speaking at the General Kassam Njogu Stadium, Kirinyaga East Sub-County during the home coming ceremony for the Gichugu MP Gichimu Githinji, the CS also told the gathering soil experts will be deployed in all agricultural areas to test the soils.
“From now on we do not want our farmers to gamble with the kind of fertilizers they apply to their Shambas hence we are sending soil experts across the country to carry out tests to enable us supply the growers with the right inputs and thereby increase food productivity,” Kiunjuri said.
The CS said although coffee produced by Mutira Coffee Cooperative society in Kirinyaga Central Sub-County was rated the best in the world last year there was urgent need for farmers in the county to undertake the production of the beverage as a business.
“As leaders we must impress upon our modern farmers to undertake coffee production like any other business venture and aim at high profitability and not casually as is the case presently, “he said.
The CS said within the next four years, the agricultural sector will be reformed into fully fledged agri-business venture attracting youthful farmers.