Kenya’s Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Peter Munya has said reforms in the coffee sub-sector would guarantee farmers a minimum of KSh100 (UShs3,337) a kilo of cherry they produce.
Speaking during the Agriculture and Food Authority public participation forums in Meru County, Mr Munya said the new Act would reign in on unscrupulous and conniving players in the value chain and ensure the sub-sector received full government support.
He told the forums at Nkubu, Kariene and North Imenti that dry milling had been identified as the epicentre of fraud against farmers through over-estimation of milling losses and erroneous grading.
“The new Act will address that lopsided state of affairs and come up with the new Cherry Advance Revolving Fund to eliminate need for farmers to constantly secure expensive credit,” he said.
He said farmers could now be advanced up to 40 per cent of the value of their produce to be repaid within the year at three per cent interest rate.
He said the government had taken over the New Kenya Planters Co-operative Union, increasing farmers’ choices for dry milling and reigning in on exploitative private millers.
“Before NKPCU got back into milling, losses at the dry milling process were about 24 per cent; it is now about 17 per cent,” he said.