Linturi tours Taita Taveta with bag of goodies for farmers

Agriculture and Livestock Development Cabinet Secretary (CS) Mithika Linturi flagging off the launching of sunflower seeds distribution under the edible oil crops promotion project.

By Michael Oduor/

Taita Taveta County has received a mobile grain dryer from the National Government in an effort to assist farmers in mitigating post-harvest losses.

Agriculture and Livestock Development Cabinet Secretary (CS) Mithika Linturi while launching the dryers said the equipment comes in handy to ensure efficiency in drying grains.

This will result to Government fulfilling vision of improving grain value chains and achieving food security in the country. “As a ministry, our main mission is to curb post-harvest losses mainly occasioned by unfavourable weather conditions, poor storage and inadequate drying facilities during harvesting,” CS Linturi said at Voi NCPB during the launch of the dryers.

He stated that each dryer has a capacity to dry 14 tons of maize in two hours. It will cost a farmer KSh70 to dry a 90kg bag of maize.

Linturi was accompanied by area governor Andrew Mwadime, Wundanyi  Deputy County Commissioner  Maina Ngunyi, Crops Development PS Paul Rono, Chairperson of the Agricultural Finance Corporation Board, Eng. John Mruttu among others.

He added, “We are now ready to start drying our grains as we promised because our main vision is to minimize post-harvest losses, and one of the ways to do this is by supporting our farmers to dry their maize and store it properly.”

The CS guaranteed farmers that the government is committed to supplying 12.5 million bags of subsidized fertilizer this year as per the analysis conducted in collaboration with the county governments.

At the same time, the CS launched the distribution of sunflower seeds under the edible oil promotion project by the national government.

For every purchase of subsidy fertilizer, a farmer will be given free sunflower seeds as the government seeks to boost the crop farming. This will increase local production of sunflower oil and subsequently reducing importation of edible oils, he added.


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Apart from edible oil, the CS said that the sunflower’s by-products could also be used as animal feeds hence boosting livestock production in the long run.

While echoing the CS’s sentiments, Crops Development PS Paul Rono, said that the National Government has donated about 16,000 metric tons of sunflower seeds to Taita Taveta farmers asking them to make good use of the seeds to maximize production of the precious commodity in the region.

Governor Andrew Mwadime thanked the Government for the speedy intervention stating that the fertilizer subsidies increased agricultural production thus the grain dryers will go a long way in helping farmers reduce post-harvest losses.

He called upon the government to support rice farming in the county.

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