Rice farmers in Kirinyaga County have all reasons to smile as the National Government has finalized plans to start purchasing the Mwea rice as part of the strategic food reserve program come January.
Speaking about the same, Agriculture CS Mwangi Kiunjuri said that a committee mandated with conducting engagements between the National Cereals and Production Board (NCPB) the respective farmers had been formed.
The process will be much similar like on the maize sector whereby, the government gives seasonal prices.
The move by the government will help in reviving and stabilizing the rice farming sector in the region. The process will also help the farmers maximize their profits as they will no longer need to rely on the middlemen.
“Every harvesting period, the area swarms with brokers whose greed for quick profits is unequaled.” Said Mwea MP Kabinga wa Thayu.
Rice is Kenya’s third staple food after maize and wheat. The product which is most grown under irrigation in the country is estimated at between 33,000 and 50,000 metric tonnes, while its consumption ranges between 180,000 and 250,000 tonnes.