Agriculture CS Mithika Linturi tours IFAD funded project in Embu

Agriculture CS Mithika Linturi, Embu Governor Cecily Mbarire, and IFAD president Alvaro Lario tour farms under the upper tana catchment natural resource management project in Embu County. [Courtesy]

Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Mithika Linturi joined Embu Governor Cecily Mbarire in welcoming the President of the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), Alvaro Lario and his delegation to Embu County.

Mr Lario and his delegation are in the country to inspect the donor funded, Upper Tana Catchment Natural Resources Management Project.

Linturi said that he is impressed by the development made so far by the beneficiaries in the IFAD funded project which is aimed at increasing Kenya’s food security.

“The goal of this project is to contribute to the reduction of rural poverty in the Upper Tana River catchment through increased sustainable food production and incomes for poor rural households, as well as sustainable management of natural resources,” said Linturi.

Among the IFAD projects is the Rutene KARIMARI community irrigation and water scheme which has successfully transformed agricultural practice in the region into a profitable venture.

The project has three main components which include; empowering communities to sustainably manage natural resources, sustainably improve the incomes and living standards of the target group and improve the sustainable management and use of water and other natural resources.

The project beneficiaries are from Embu, Tharaka Nithi, Meru, Nyeri, Murang’a and Kirinyaga Counties.

“As a Ministry, we are keen on partnering with Governors and development partners like IFAD to empower farmers in Kenya and achieve our main aim of making Kenya a food secure country,” said Linturi.

The CS assured Macadamia farmers that his ministry is working on finding a lasting solution to the poor market prices for their products.

“I have already appointed a new board of the Agriculture and Food Authority (AFA) which is looking into the Macadamia market prices locally and ensuring macadamia goes for Sh100 per kilo,” added the CS.

“They will also find ways of empowering macadamia farmers since we are on the verge of getting new international markets for macadamia to boost prizes.”

The board will come up with regulations to ensure the farmers produce won’t end up in the hands of brokers.

The CS further encouraged farmers from all parts of the country to register in the ongoing registration of farmers under the Kenya Management Information System (KIAMIS) to benefit from government subsidy programmes like low cost fertilizer and other farm inputs.