Kakamega County together with partners in Agriculture sector have started a programme to promote horticulture to end farmers overreliance on sugarcane as a source of income.
Governor Wycliffe Oparanya said the county was helping farmers to diversify their agricultural activities adding that their focus was on horticulture which he added that was well paying due to readily available market of the produce.
In order to achieve this goal the county has partnered with Fresh Produce Exporters Association of Kenya ( FPEAK) and Fresh Produce Consortium to promote horticultural programmes and explore the export market to benefit farmers.
Oparanya said the organizations in conjunction with other organizations from both National Government and private sector will work with the County to support farmers in horticultural sector and provide export market for their fresh produce.
He said the Kakamega has a huge potential for export of fresh produce adding that the partnership will go a long way in spurring agribusiness that will improve both export of produce by farmers and regional economy.
The Governor was addressing the media after meeting officers from National Government and private sector who were led by FPC Kenya CEO Mr Okisegere Ojepat.
He noted that the County largely relied on agriculture as the main source of income adding that horticultural sector has not been fully exploited despite the huge potential.
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He said under the programme farmers will be brought together in groups, trained on agribusiness and helped to export their produce.
He noted that the Kisumu International Airport will be of great help to farmers engaged in exporting their produce.
He said the County has invested Ksh100 million in promotion of fish farming to improve fish production for the Kakamega Fish Processing Plant which exports the commodity.
He noted that the County has put another Ksh100 million in the Kakamega County Microfinance Agency to enable farmers access credit facilities at a lower interest rate to support their agricultural ventures.
The Governor added that the programme will be scaled up to the LREB region to help deal with food insecurity, alleviate poverty and ensure farmers earn more cash. More