Miller launches farmers’ education programme to boost sugarcane production

Butali Sugar Mills

Butali Sugar Mills’ management has embarked on a vigorous education programme to educate and train farmers on best cane farming practices following reopening after a three-month closure over insufficient sugarcane supply.

The factory has dispatched a team of agricultural experts who are visiting different zones to meet farmers and educate them on how to prepare land, plant the best seeds, and cultivate and harvest quality canes.

The team, in partnership with Butali Sugarcane Farmers Association (BSFA) officials, said that they will ensure farmers amass sufficient knowledge to boost cane production.

Speaking in Chepsaita, Uasin Gishu county, BSFA Chairman William Kopi Mswahili said that the education seminars will focus on their catchment areas of Butali, Nzoia, West Kenya, Naitiri and Uasin Gishu as they collect views on strategies to streamline the sugar industry and ensure farmers get value for their money.

He lauded the farmers for turning out in large numbers for the education forums and encouraging more to attend adding that they had increased the buying price from Ksh5,000 to Ksh6,050 per tonne.

Kopi said that since they resumed operations on December 1, they have yet to receive sufficient cane and have been crushing cane at half capacity of 1,500 tonnes down from 3,000 tonnes they were crushing daily.

Farmers also expressed their joy after the management introduced advance payments to farmers with canes nearing harvesting, saying it will help them to offset their financial obligations.

By Andanje Wakhungu

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