Dairy operator Brookside says it will continue procuring 100 per cent of all contracted milk volumes from farmers in spite of the current rains, which are expected to result in increased milk production over the next couple of weeks.
Brookside Dairy’s Milk Procurement Director John Gethi said they will buy all contracted volumes from all its 160,000 farmers countrywide, as part of the firm’s promise to provide an assured market for its raw milk suppliers.
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Brookside’s announcement comes as a relief to dairy farmers across the country who see the current heavy rains as a precursor to a milk glut with the anticipated increase in forage and pasture grasses for livestock.
The Ruiru-based processor has an installed processing capacity of 1.5 million litres of milk per day, serviced by some 55 raw milk cooling stations across the country.
However, while speaking at Mosoriot in Nandi County during a dairy training session for farmers on Friday, Mr Gethi said the processor, which controls 45 per cent of the country’s raw milk market share, would continue to procure 100 per cent of all contracted volumes.
“We have recently undertaken major upgrades at both our milk cooling facilities and at the Ruiru processing house to enable us handle more volumes from farmers. In spite of expected increases from the current rains in the next couple of weeks, our farmers can rest assured that we shall continue to provide an assured market for their milk,” Mr Gethi said.
Dairy farmers in Nandi County earned Sh335 million from raw milk sales to the processor last year, signaling improving fortunes for the enterprise in the area.
Gethi said the income reflected a Sh 5 million growth over payouts made by the processor to the farmers in 2016.
“The improving fortunes for dairy farming in Nandi confirms that our dairy training courses, through which we impart knowledge to farmers on ways of growing milk production, are bearing fruit,” he said.
He said the processor had upgraded the operational capacity of its Eldoret milk bulking station, which serves Nandi and Uasin Gishu counties, to enable it handle over 100,000 litres of raw milk per day.