Dairy farmers in Tharaka Nithi County are set to make increased profits from the new regulations expected to streamline the industry.
The new regulations aim at protecting Kenya’s dairy industry from unfair trade practices and set a minimum return price for each liter sold.
While addressing dairy farmers at Chuka University during a field day organized by Kenya Dairy Board (KDB), Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Peter Munya said farmers were being sensitized about different services available in the ministry to maximize productivity and prevent unnecessary dumping.
Munya revealed that the new regulations will boost the milk sub-sector by increasing milk production and profits to farmers.
“A farmer must get the amount of money that gives them profit and cover for their losses so they can continue producing more milk and earning more to boost themselves,” he said.
The CS told the farmers that milk cooperative societies should pay them according to the minimum return price required by the law which is set to be reviewed every 6 months depending on the availability and market forces.
“You should report anyone that pays you less than the minimum return price to the Kenya Dairy Board so that necessary action can be taken against them,” he reiterated.
Munya refuted the selling of milk from outside the country, where the manufacturing process and quality have not been verified through intensive examination, adding that they are working with the Ministry of Interior to arrest the culprits.
He further added that milk can only be imported if production is low in the country while observing that the dairy sector had the potential to sell milk beyond the country’s borders.
The CS emphasized the importance of learning cheap animal feed sources, noting that a new board has been appointed to verify the feeds as well as the quality of fertilizers.
He further disclosed that the new regulations have also been implemented in other sectors such as tea and coffee to boost production.
On her part, Kenya Dairy Board MD Margaret Kibogy said the Kenya Institute for Public Policy Research and Analysis (KIPPRA) had commenced research to investigate the utilization of money from the farmer to the transporter, then to the processor, and finally to the consumer.
In partnership with other sectors in the ministry, Kibogy revealed that they are training dairy farmers on the cost of feed profitability. She disclosed that Tharaka Nithi County is producing 100,000 liters of milk which is still below the demand.
She assured me that KDB will continue to work with the county to improve the production and quality of milk.
The field day brought together other dairy farming partners such as New Kenya Cooperative Creameries (KCC), Kenya Seed Company, National Cereals and Produce Board, and Agricultural Finance Corporation among others.