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Seed company seeks to eliminate bogus dealers, fake products

RIFT VALLEY
By - | August 23rd 2012

By Osinde Obare

Kenya Seed Company (KSC) says it has developed measures to bar unscrupulous dealers from faking its products.

Managing Director Willy Bett said the new security measures would lock out dishonest dealers from producing and selling bogus seeds to farmers.

Bett said the company has de-registered several seed stockists, including a leading supermarket in Kitale found selling fake seeds to unsuspecting farmers.

“We are soon unveiling a major plan and the measures would make it difficult to fake our products,” said the MD during a press briefing at Mbegu Plaza in Kitale.

Bett said the company had started vetting new stockists after blacklisting those found engaging in shoddy deals to exploit farmers.

“We have invested in intelligence and we will vet stockists. We will involve the Kenya Chamber of Commerce and Industry to provide a clean bill of health of the business people intending to work with the company,” he said.

Bett disclosed the company has completed a Sh30 million irrigation project that will help in the production of maize seeds two seasons a year.  The irrigation project at Endebess will help the firm produce basic seed throughout the year.

The MD said more emphasis has been directed to research to improve the current seed varieties.

“Our research department has toiled to identify and improve the best ecological varieties to enhance productivity by the farmers,” said Bett.

He also announced the firm had organised a one-day regional research field day at its Elgon down Farm to train farmers on various research and micro-economic practices.

He encouraged farmers to make use of information provided by the KSC and the Ministry of Agriculture to double production and fight hunger.

 In June, farmers in Nandi County where a maize disease ravaged acres of the crop suspected they were sold fake seeds.

They said the disease only affected the hybrid H614 seed variety preferred by farmers in North Rift region.


 

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