KENYA – The Kenya Dairy Board is seeking to explore various measures to support the increment of milk production in the country.
According to the Board’s chairperson, Murang’a County currently produces 85 million litres of milk annually arguing the county has a capacity to double the production to 170 million litres annually.
He noted that with the employment of various measures, Murang’a County has the potential to increase milk production from an average of 6 litres per cow to more than 15 litres on a daily basis.
Mugo revealed that lack of enough healthy fodder has limited milk production not only in the county but also in other regions of the country.
He added that the introduction of cheap fodder would boost milk production will hence thus increasing the earnings of dairy farmers.
As a way of helping farmers and ensuring they have cheap animal feeds, Mugo revealed that the government has opened up public land for planting fodder.
In addition, the board chair noted that the 50 milk coolers which earlier promised by the President William Ruto are aimed to increase milk production by ensuring milk is well preserved.
Currently, Murang’a has 39 milk coolers which were installed by the former county administration.
“Our target is to ensure Murang’a becomes the largest milk producer because the county has the capacity. The government is working to provide cheap fodder and also provide subsidies to dairy farmers to cushion them from the fluctuation of milk prices,” Mugo said.
He also noted that the government is currently working on policies and structures to implement milk subsidies in a few months.
According to Mugo, Kenya currently produces 5.2 billion litres of milk annually saying the milk production generates more than Sh. 200 billion.
Farmers sell their milk at Sh.50 per litre and receive an average of Sh .45 per litre after deductions by their dairy co-operatives.
“Milk prices have gone up after the board banned processors from importing and selling in the local market powder milk. Before March this year, some processors used to import, repackage and sell imported powder milk, something which affected the price of locally produced milk,” the chairperson highlighted.
Meanwhile, Mugo highlighted that the government has allocated Sh. 3 billion to improve the capacity of Kenya Cooperative Creameries (KCC) to ensure farmers have a ready market for their produce.
He added that the Kiganjo factory which is run by New KCC and was commissioned by the President two weeks ago will start processing camel milk.