Uasin Gishu County Executive Committee Member for Agriculture Samuel Yego, has urged farmers to embrace proper Post Harvest Management (PHM) methods in order to avoid incurring regular losses.
He said that it is estimated that Uasin Gishu County losses up to 30% of the grain harvested annually.
Speaking during the launch of Producer Organization Inclusion Grants at Singalo Farmers Cooperative Society Milk Cooler in Tarakwa ward, Kesses Sub-County, CECM Samuel Yego said that farmers loose their produce due to rotting, breakages, weevils, longer grain borer, aflatoxin and poor storage structures.
And with agricultural officer posted to every ward, the CECM said the officers should train farmers on PHM methods for improved production.
Our extension officers are on the ground to train our farmers on post harvest management since they have been greatly affected during this harvesting season,” said Yego.
He added that the losses occurs due to unpredictable climatic conditions, pest infestation, poor timing of harvesting, drying methods, types of seeds, storage materials and structures as well as shelling methods which leads to high breakages of the grains.
With the warehouse receipt system recently launched in the County, farmers will be given an opportunity to choose on whether to use the licensed warehouses for proper storage of the produce which in exchange a farmer is issued a receipt for either loan facilitation or right market prices.
The County has constructed cereal stores with a capacity of over 200,000 bags, these are Tuiyo Cereal Store, Tulwet/Chuiyat Cereal Store Meteeny cereal stores among others. He further said that the County is in the process of improving the Kaptait Cooperative Society, Mafuta FCS.
There are also other stores within the Sub Counties that will be used for storage purposes thus improving post harvest management of the cereals.