Coffee farmers seek grants from county to revive sector

According to Katingima, the previous regime failed to bail them out.

"We are here begging the new county leadership to have mercy on coffee farmers by providing the necessary assistance to revive the sector," he said.

Katingima said many farmers were overwhelmed by loans.

Agriculture and Co-operatives Executive Joel Nzomo assured them that under the administration of Governor Wavinya Ndeti, their pleas would be addressed.

"The governor has good plans for all farmers in the county," said Nzomo who was accompanied by his chief officer for cooperatives Benedict Ngumbau.

The executive said the county government was seeking partnerships with foreign coffee buyers.

"I am consulting some foreign partners who are willing to buy coffee direct from Machakos and ready to provide farmers with cheap farm inputs, " he said.

Nzomo promised that extension officers will be deployed in all the sub-counties as one way of promoting agriculture.

He praised the Machakos cooperative union leadership for coming up with Lower Eastern Coffee Mill, which had saved farmers the trouble of ferrying their produce to distant millers.