Dairy farmers in Trans Nzoia county are set to benefit from a three-year program by the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) in partnership with the government which seeks to increase dairy output.
The Smallholder Dairy Commercialization Program (SDCP) jointly funded by IFAD and the government of Kenya seeks to enhance the livelihoods of rural smallholder farmers in the sub-sector.
The goal will be pursued through improved information on market opportunities, financial returns on market-oriented production and trade activities, increased productivity besides value addition.
It will also be approached through enabling more rural households to create employment besides benefiting from expanded opportunities for market-oriented dairy activities as a result of strengthened farmer organizations.
The county government through its Livestock department will play a lead role in mapping smallholder dairy farmers and creating linkages as well as creating an enabling environment for the realization of the project goal.
Governor Patrick Khaemba who hosted a team from the IFAD at his office last week welcomed the initiative even as he called on the Kenya Dairy Board (KDB) to regulate the prices of dairy products for farmers to benefit.
He noted that farmers who are the producers sold raw milk at very low prices yet others in the production chain benefit more for selling processed milk at very high prices.
Khaemba challenged the KDB to standardize milk prices so that dairy farmers can benefit from their ventures. He further called for a reduction in the cost of dairy feed in order to lower the cost of production.
Also present were Agriculture County Executive Mary Nzomo, Livestock Chief Officer Shadrack Kimutai and other technical staff from the department.