Plans underway to subsidise seed, improve yields

CS Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock Development Mithika Linturi. [Jonah Onyango, Standard]

The government has increased the number of counties under the agriculture subsidy programme to 17 as President William Ruto plans to announce new prices for maize seeds.

Principal Secretary in the Department of Crop Development, Kello Harsana, said farmers in Kisii, Homa Bay, Laikipia, Baringo and Nyamira will access the subsidised fertilisers and maize seeds in the government's efforts to enhance food production.

"The president is set to announce the new price for seed. The government's agenda is to reduce the cost of production to spur the economy," said Harsana.

During an inspection tour on the distribution of subsidised fertilisers in Kitale, the PS said the government intends to ensure farmers across the country access affordable fertilisers.

He said the government has negotiated with the counties of Trans Nzoia, Uasin Gishu and Elgeyo Marakwet and established collection centres for easy accessibility by farmers.

The PS said such stores would save farmers the cost of transportation of fertilisers from the National Cereals and Produce Board depots.

This comes as Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Mithika Linturi urged farmers to use government systems to register for subsidised fertilisers.

Linturi said the e-voucher system rolled out by the government ensures traceability and full accountability of the distribution process.