The government in partnership with the European Union (EU) is investing 5.26 billion shillings in a value chain programme that will mainly target small scale farmers.
The seven year programme targets to enhance food security, create jobs, raise incomes and enhance market access.
The success of two pillars of the government’s focus areas namely food security and manufacturing, is dependent on the success of the agriculture value chain that ensures that small holder farmers are accommodated within a functional agriculture sub-sector.
This will be through Agro-processing as well as adding value to cotton, skins and hides.
In the next financial year, the state plans to reduce post-harvest losses from 20 percent to 15 percent by enhancing market distribution infrastructure and availing incentives for post-harvest technologies.
Speaking at the launch of the European Union funded, Support to Productive, Adapted and Market Integrated Smallholder Agriculture (AgriFi Kenya), Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Mwangi Kiunjuri said the sector is capable of success by reducing over 30% losses due to post harvest loses.
He noted that the freeze on employment directed by the World Bank in the 1980s and 90s impacted the agriculture sector negatively since it removed farmer education programs that were necessary for knowledge transfer, adding that that the government plans to recruit over 3,000 extension workers to help address the knowledge gap.
AgriFI Kenya, through the Kilimo Value Chain Challenge Fund, will help finance high impact development projects within the agriculture sector through targeting small holder farmers.