KENYA – Kenyan President William Ruto has disclosed plans for a significant reform in the dairy industry as he announced the formulation of a bi-monthly payment system for milk farmers on Monday, April 8.

During a visit to the Eldoret National Cereals and Produce Board (NCPB) stores, President Ruto outlined the initiative as a crucial step towards empowering farmers and bolstering agricultural sustainability.

Starting July 2024, farmers are set to benefit from monthly payments, with President Ruto assuring prompt disbursements akin to regular salaries.

He emphasized the future goal of transitioning to bi-monthly payments, ensuring farmers’ ability to purchase essential supplies such as animal feed without delay.

Expressing dissatisfaction with cooperatives’ prolonged payment delays of up to two months, President Ruto underscored the imperative of streamlining payment processes.

The push for bi-monthly payments aligns with his vision to elevate agriculture as a key economic driver and enhance national food security.

In alignment with these reforms, President Ruto announced government intervention in the dairy sector, with plans to provide Ksh50 for every litre of milk starting from the end of April.

The move aims to uplift farmers’ income and stimulate growth within the industry.

However, despite these promising reforms, challenges persist for some farmers as residents of Ol Jabet in Laikipia County voiced grievances before the Senate Agriculture Committee, led by Kirinyaga Senator Kamau Murango.

Farmers lamented New KCC’s failure to remit payments for milk deliveries over the past four months, resulting in dire financial strain and impeding children’s education due to fee arrears.

Paul Njoroge Mutoru, a dairy farmer, highlighted the disillusionment among farmers who had shifted allegiance to New KCC following promises of improved milk prices.

However, the non-payment since December has prompted a return to private processors, exacerbating financial hardships compounded by losses incurred in a fake fertilizer scandal.

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