Muranga County offers subsidies for produce to boost farmers

Kambiti East mango farmers chairman Patrick Sila demonstrating to his colleagues on procedures of drying mangos in one of the farms in Murang'a South district. [Boniface Gikandi, Standard]

Murang'a County government has paid out Sh20 million to dairy and mango farmers after they qualified for a subsidy programme.

In the exercise witnessed by Cabinet secretaries Moses Kuria (Trade) and Prof Njuguna Ndung'u(Treasury), Governor Irungu Kang'ata said the assembly allocated the subsidy programme Sh20million to boost the dairy and mango farmers after years of exploitation.

"Murang'a is the first county to issue support to the farmers at the rate of Sh3.50 per litre of milk and the same for a kilogramme of mangoes," said Kang'ata.

The amount is a guaranteed minimum payment to each farmer from the county, in addition to what they receive from their cooperative for their produce.

However, at least 3,000 farmers missed the disbursement because the details they submitted to their cooperatives were declared invalid by the financial institutions.

The governor asked them to make the corrections to their listed ID numbers and mobile phones for easy access to their money.

Kenya Revenue Authority Chairman Antony Mwaura was among the dairy farmers who received a subsidy of more than Sh100,000 after he delivered his produce through a cooperative.

The cabinet secretaries described the programme as an incentive to farmers to increase production and venture into the value addition programme to sustain the ready market for the produce.

CS Kuria said the government was interested in establishing industrial parks in the 23 counties to increase trade opportunities.

"I am delighted that Murang'a is ready for the Sh250 million from the government for the establishment of an industrial park at Makeji in July," said Kuria.

The Treasury CS said the initiative by Kang'ata is one of the most transformative agriculture revival strategies towards transforming the economic fortunes of farmers in Murang'a county.

He said that a sizeable number of farmers met the requisite conditions of the subsidy programme, and we expect that other crops like avocado would be included in the programme.

"The government is interested in aggregating the produce for easy value addition," said the CS.

He added that 95 per cent of the avocadoes grown in Kenya originate from Murang'a county, thus need to be included the crop in the subsidy programme.