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PS Kello Lauds Makueni’s Exemplary Farmer Profiling Exercise

Permanent Secretary State Department for Crop Development Kello Harsama has lauded Makueni for its exemplary Farmer profiling exercise.
PS Kello noted that Makueni was among the counties which had made commendable strides in the exercise which is ongoing across the country, aimed at collecting and documenting data on farmers.
He praised Makueni on Tuesday when he visited a number of farmers in Utangwa, in a bid to assess the progress of the exercise, noting that similar initiative had aborted in some counties due to malpractice in the recruitment of the agri-prenures.
He stated, ” We said we visit the counties that are progressing well in the farmer profiling. Makueni has done very well while in other counties the exercise was stopped due to malpractice in recruiting the enumerators.”
The exercise will close on 8th, October 2023  and officials called on farmers to avail as accurate information as possible.
The PS was hosted by Makueni Deputy Governor Lucy Mulili, Agriculture Executive Joyce Mutua and other senior county officials.
Mulili thanked the National Government for the support they had rendered to the county government, highlighting successful recruitment of the agri-prenures and dispatching of Sh 4.7 Million worth of cherry fund to Makueni coffee farmers.

A workshop focused on the validation of the Animal Feed Strategy.

Agriculture and Irrigation Chief Officer Daniel Ndolo on Tuesday officially inaugurated a crucial 3-day workshop focused on the validation of the Animal Feed Strategy.
The event, attended by key stakeholders in the agriculture and livestock sectors, marks a significant step towards ensuring sustainable and efficient animal husbandry practices in the county
The workshop, staged at Kusyombunguo is organized by the County  Department of Agriculture in collaboration with the State Department of Livestock and Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) aims to validate and refine the Animal Feed Strategy, which is poised to have a substantial impact on the agricultural and livestock industries.
In his opening remarks, Ndolo highlighted the importance of optimizing animal feed strategies for the benefit of both farmers and consumers.
 He stated, “Our commitment to modernizing agriculture and ensuring food security begins with the well-being of our livestock. An efficient and sustainable animal feed strategy is the cornerstone of achieving these objectives.Through this workshop, we aim to harness the collective expertise of our key stakeholders to enhance the quality and efficiency of animal feed production.”
Over the course of the 3-day workshop, participants will engage in intensive discussions, presentations, and collaborative sessions to:
    Evaluate the existing Animal Feed Strategy and identify areas for improvement.
    Review recent advancements in animal nutrition science and technology.
    Share best practices and success stories from within the industry.
    Develop a roadmap for the implementation and dissemination of the validated Animal Feed Strategy.
The workshop has attracted a diverse group of attendees, including farmers, researchers, industry representatives, policymakers, and Non-Governmental Organizations, all of whom play pivotal roles in the Agriculture and livestock industry.

Makueni Coffee Farmers To Receive Sh 4.7 Million Worth of Cherry Fund to Enhance Coffee Production

At least 1000 coffee farmers from Kikima Farmers Cooperative Society are beneficiaries of Sh.4.7 Million worth of cherry Fund to boost coffee production and productivity.
This is one of the areas of collaboration between the county government of Makueni and the New Kenya Planters Co-operative Union(New KPCU) to revamp the coffee sector in Makueni.
During the official launch of the Cherry Fund at Mulima Coffee factory on Thursday, Governor Mutula Kilonzo Jnr announced that his administration will make plans to provide fertilizer and other farm inputs for improved coffee production.
Farmers were sensitized on best agriculture practices for maximum coffee profitability, ahead of a benchmark tour to Mukarimu Farm in Meru, the best coffee farmer in Kenya.

Governor Mutula Unveils the Farmer Profiling Exercise in Makueni

Governor Mutula Kilonzo Jnr together with his Deputy Lucy Mulili on Wednesday officially launched the Agricultural Value Chain profiling exercise, Makueni chapter at ATC- Kwakathoka.

The Agricultural Value Chain profiling is an exercise that is being spearheaded by the National Government in collaboration with the County Governments through the National Agricultural Value Chain Development Project (NAVCDP) and is seeking to undertake a comprehensive registration of all farmers across the country.

The exercise also seeks to map and register all value chain actors that support farmers such as agro-inputs dealers, aggregators, processors, extension service providers, marketing centers and transporters, among others. This will help the government link farmers to key service providers through digitalized platforms such as e-extension and other e-services.

Makueni has already recruited 504 agri prenures and will embark on the data collection on Friday, and will take 25 days.

Governor Mutula urged the agri preneurs to be keen so as to capture every farmer so that they don’t miss out on important government services.

On her part, Mulili said that the exercise is important for the county government and that the data will be helpful in informed decision making and planning.

Agriculture Executive Joyce Mutua asked the young people to take advantage of the profiling activity and borrow some of the best agriculture practices which they can implement to better their lives.

The launch was also graced by Devolution and Transport Executives Japheth Mang’oka and Eng. Sebastian Kyoni respectively, Muvau-Kikumini Member of County Assembly Elizabeth Mutinda, Livestock, Fisheries and Cooperative Development Chief Officer Dr. Victoria Kyalo and NAVCDP County Coordinator Paul Musyimi.

KCDMS, Makueni Drum for Conservative Agriculture

At least 4,000 makueni farmers will benefit from free deep tillage services, ahead of the short rains in a bid to increase agricultural productivity and profitability.
USAID funded Feed the Future Kenya Crops and Dairy Market Systems Activity (KCDMS) in conjunction with the county government of Makueni will engage 30 Tractor service providers to offer free deep tillage services among farmers.
Deep tillage popularly known as conservative agriculture is a climate adoption methodology where farmers are encouraged to use chisel plough/sub soiler instead of the convectional disc plough.
This offer will run for one month before the short rains commence in October and it acts as an incentive to farmers to adopt these practices by providing them with cost-effective solutions that can significantly improve soil health and crop yield.
Makueni County Agriculture and Irrigation Chief Officer Daniel Ndolo and KCDMS Senior Technical Advisor  Brenda Aluda on Monday flagged off a 2-day deep tillage campaign to sensitize farmers on conservative agriculture.
Aluda noted that over the last seasons farmers in the region have been reaping low farm produce as a result of drought that had hit the area due to climate change. 
“The reason why we are focusing today on soil and water conservation measures is because Makueni, Kitui and Taita Taveta have experienced drought due to climate change in the past two seasons and with insufficient water farmers have been reaping little farm produce,” said Aluda.
Ndolo on his part called on farmers to take advantage of the free deep tillage services and adopt conservative Agriculture for increased yield and food security at the household level.

Kikome Irrigation Scheme to Put 50 Acres under Irrigation in Kitise

Kikome Irrigation scheme in Kitise-Kithuki Ward is 70% complete, Agriculture and Irrigation Chief Officer Daniel Ndolo has said.
Ndolo toured the scheme on Thursday to check on the status of the project and fast-track its completion.
Kikome is one of the 11 micro-irrigation schemes being implemented through the Small-Scale Irrigation and Value Addition Project (SIVAP) in partnership with the county government of Makueni.
Once complete, the scheme will benefit 100 households and irrigate 50 acres with different high-value crops like capsicum, spinach, kale, green maize and fruit trees.
The county government through the Department of Agriculture, Irrigation, Livestock, Fisheries and Cooperative Development is also establishing 2 large irrigation schemes, that is, Utangwa and Kyeemwea in Mbooni and Kaiti Sub-Counties respectively.
The micro and large irrigation schemes will irrigate 600 acres to help enhance food security in Makueni.

Makueni, ADS-Kenya Ink a Deal to Enhance Employability for Women and Youth in Agriculture

At least 600 youth and women from Makueni will benefit from Green Business Project (GBP), courtesy of a 1-year deal signed on Wednesday by Makueni Governor Mutula Kilonzo Jnr and  Anglican Development Services Kenya (Ads Kenya) Programs Manager Charles Macharia.
The purpose of the GBP is to create economic opportunities and enhance employability for Youth and Women of productive age through green skills and capacity development along the target value chains namely horticulture, dairy and poultry.
The youth beneficiaries will be trained at ATC-Kwakathoka for a period of 3 months and placed on attachment thereafter for 3 months at the same center. The women-organized groups will participate in field-based training. This will be preceded by a competitive recruitment process.
After successful training and assessment, successful beneficiaries will partially be supported with start-up capital.
The signing of the partnership was witnessed by Agriculture Executive Mrs Joyce Mutua and ADS-Kenya Programs Officer Sophia Gakii.

A New Dawn for Coffee Farmers in Makueni

New Kenya Planters Cooperative Union (New KPCU) is seeking to collaborate with Makueni county government to upscale the coffee sector in the county.
Governor Mutula Kilonzo Jnr on Monday hosted a high powered delegation from New KPCU to discuss areas of partnership to revamp the sector. The areas include;
• Sensitization and enrolment of coffee farmers to the cherry fund. Makueni coffee farmers are eligible for up to Sh 11 Million worth of cherry fund. The application by farmers for the fund will commence early next month.
• Establishment of a coffee nursery and a demonstration farm,
• Capacity build farmers on best farm practises to increase coffee yield per acre,
• Capacity build coffee Cooperatives Societies on governance and leadership to improve resource management, and
• Linkage to processing, value addition and markets.