Gov’t will support dairy farmers to meet market demands, CS Linturi says

Agriculture Cabinet Secretary (CS) Mithika Linturi has said that the government is committed to supporting dairy farmers to boost their production.

Linturi was speaking on Thursday where he presided over the launch of the Kenya Dairy Sustainability Roadmap 2023-2032, which seeks to leverage modern technology and climate-smart approaches to boost the dairy sector, aiming to produce an extra 2.5 billion litres of high-quality milk annually.

According to the CS, the Strategic Plan will facilitate a shift towards modern farming practices, increase support towards farmers and expand their markets.

“It’s not just about meeting the growing demand for quality milk but also addressing challenges like declining production, import dependence, climate change, and empowering young farmers,” he said.

Linturi noted that this is part of President Ruto’s plan to support groups of small-scale dairy farmers in increasing production to meet the demand in the market.

Kenya’s dairy sector is estimated to contribute 14 per cent of the country’s agricultural Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Milk is primarily produced by smallholder farmers, who account for 56 per cent of the total output.

It is estimated that the sector has 1.8 million smallholder farmers (about 80 percent of producers).

Furthermore, the country has the highest per capita milk consumption in sub-Saharan Africa, at 110 litres.

In line with this, the government has prioritized the industry by initiating strategies such as the Agricultural Sector Transformation and Growth Strategy (2019-2029) and the president’s Big Four Agenda. Apparently, there is also a dairy master plan meant to guide the development of the industry up to 2030.

By Amos Kerich

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