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Kenya Seed Company launches SMS technology to fight counterfeit

BUSINESS
By SILAH KOSKEI | May 18th 2015

ELDORET, KENYA: Kenya Seed Company has devised a digital platform to fight counterfeit in the market which requires buyers to confirm genuine seeds by Short Text Message (SMS).
The company recently installed the SMS technology by inscribing sealed codes which can only be scratched off by the buyers and sent to numbers on the seed bag to determine its authenticity.
Speaking to the Standard in his office, the Managing Director (MD) Willy Bett expressed confidence that the war against unscrupulous dealers will soon be faced off with the new technology.
"The company has been losing over 20 per cent of its profit to counterfeit and we are upbeat that from the current innovation, buyers will have powers at their disposal to determine whether the product they are paying for is indeed genuine or not," he said.
Bett explained that the confirmation cost shall be Sh2 bob per sms sent and the reply will be instant adding that the technological advancement where most people in the country currently own phones will assist in curbing the vice.
"Our distribution outlets will soon embark on educating the public on the importance of making use of the digital platform each time they acquire seeds so that even as they plant, they are assured of good yields," he noted.
He added that the new move will bring an end to the numerous complaints lodged to the company by farmers whose yields have dwindled due to fake seeds they buy from unscrupulous traders across the country.
The MD called on the government to increase the penalties of charges imposed on those who are arrested selling fake seeds in the country.

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