Livestock farmers can now access interest-free loans courtesy of a Sh300 million project launched by the county government.
They will also be able be entitled to free artificial insemination services in the programme, which is a partnership between Baringo County and KCB.
The project aims to increase the revenue generated from the livestock sector from the current Sh3.1 billion to Sh10 billion annually in the next five years.
According to the Agriculture and Livestock County Executive Luka Rotich, the initiative dubbed “Livestock value Chain Development Program” will among others, start a system of storing hay.
“We have also introduced fast maturing hybrid Sahiwal and Boran bulls which can weigh up to 800 kilogrammes. Thirty bulls have been bought for each of the selected wards in the pilot programme,” Mr Rotich told the Nation.
He said that the use of modern technologies such as A.I. Services, Improved Bull schemes, de-hiders (flaying machine) will turn around the livestock sector.
MONTHLY GOAT AUCTIONS
Mr Rotich said that the famous Kimalel Goat Auction, which was re-opened last year, will host monthly goat auctions.
“We are in the process of setting up two new slaughterhouses and renovating five more. We will thus start selling meat instead of animals,” said Mr Rotich.
A meat processing plant will be set up where animals will be processed and exported to the Middle East.
The factory will also be open to farmers from the neighbouring Laikipia and Samburu.
He said that the county government has plans to introduce Dorper and Galla Bucks sheep breeds.
However, the county is grappling with challenges like perennial drought and diseases like Foot and Mouth and East Coast Fever.
“Marketing, poor quality breeds, limited livestock management knowledge and lack of value addition remain a problem,” said Mr Rotich.
He said that the county government’s partnership with KCB Foundation will particularly focus on marketing and value addition.
Source: Daily Nation Tuesday, October 7, 2014