West Pokot County signs pact to boost cotton farming

The West Pokot county government has signed an agreement with Rift Valley Textiles (Rivatex) to improve cotton production in the area.

In the pact, the textile company will provide certified seeds and pesticides to cotton farmers and also market the produce.

Currently, at least 300 farmers in the county grow cotton at Chepkobhe, Riwo, Lomut and Batei.

More than 5,000 acres are marked to be put under cotton farming this year.

Speaking during the signing of the pact, Governor John Lonyangapuo welcomed the partnership, terming it a breakthrough in cotton farming in the county.

Lonyangapuo said that farmers had abandoned cotton farming due to lack of a market and persistent disease.

“This will change because farmers will be supplied with pesticides and disease resistant seeds. Farmers had stopped cultivating the crop owing to poor prices," Prof Lonyangapuo said.

On coffee farming, Lonyangapuo said soil testing was done in 2005 and repeated in 2012, and the area was found to be good for coffee growing. Free coffee seedlings have been given out. Rivatex MD Thomas Kipkurgat lauded the partnership.

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Cotton farmingRift Valley TextilesWest Pokot county