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Relief for farmers as fertiliser prices go down

BUSINESS
By Renee Were | Apr 2nd 2022 | 2 min read
By Renee Were | April 2nd 2022
BUSINESS

Loaders carry fertilizer belonging to Yara East Africa limited at the company depot along Mombasa road in Nairobi on March 15, 2022. [Collins Kweyu, Standard]

Farmers can now tend their fields after the Ministry of Agriculture Livestock and Fisheries announced reduced fertilizer prices on Friday.

Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Peter Munya said a 50kg bag of DAP Fertiliser will now cost Sh2,800 from Sh6,000.

A similar bag of CAN will go for Sh1,950 from Sh3,900, the UREA fertiliser will cost Sh2,700 from Sh6,500 while the NPK bag will retail at Sh3,000 from Sh4,900.

MOP fertiliser will cost 2,500 from 3,800 while the SA fertiliser will go for Sh2,500 from Sh3,800. This serves as a relief to farmers ahead of the long rains planting season of March-May. Munya announced that they had set aside Sh5.73 billion to subsidize the prices and that the fertilisers are now in stock at various stores countrywide.

“The Government has set aside Sh5.734 billion to subsidise 2.28 million 50-kg bags of fertilizer for farmers growing food crops,” said CS Munya.

“To ensure efficient delivery and control mechanisms are in place, the fertilizers will be available at NCPB stores countrywide on April 2, 2022” he added.

Munya said that the quantities are projected to support the cultivation of 1.13 million acres. Early March, the CS had maintained that the prices would not be reduced till August as the ministry was awaiting a Sh31.8 billion allocation for the subsidy. Munya further explained that the ongoing Russia-Ukraine war, rising gas prices due to extreme weather conditions and export restrictions by producer countries prompted government action.

“The rise in fertiliser prices is due to producer countries such as China, Russia and Turkey restricting exports to protect their farmers because of high demand.

He elaborated that the heavy consumption of countries such as India, Brazil and USA reduced global supply and led to competition for shipping and increased cargo container rates.  

 “Further, due to extreme winter conditions, gas prices drastically increased in Europe, causing many urea and nitrate production factories to close. The Russia-Ukraine crisis caused further disruptions and concerns in the global fertilizer industry,” said Munya.

Government agencies will sell the fertilizers at agreed subsidized prices to stabilize the prices of critical fertilizers to the Kenyan farmer.

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