Local animal feeds manufacturers will continue to import yellow maize duty free until next year as the government moves in to cushion farmers from the rising prices of animal feeds.
Livestock director in the ministry of agriculture Julius Kiptarus says the drought experienced in most parts of the country lowered milk production by 50 percent costing the country 2.2 billion Kenyan shillings.
The drought has pushed up the prices of essential commodities including milk with half a liter packet retailing at 65 shillings at one time.
The high cost was attributed to the scarcity of pasture and animal feeds as a result of failed rains which prompted the government to allow duty free importation of yellow maize for the manufacture of animal feeds.
The government says local feed manufactures will be allowed import duty free yellow maize until next year.
The government has also procured 350 coolers with a 3,000 liter capacity each to support milk storage as milk production gradually increases with the onset of rains in some parts of the country.
The government has also installed a liquid nitrogen plant in Nkubu town to ensure livestock farmers in the region access better services.
Kenya Dairy Board managing director Margaret Kibogy urged dairy farmers in the country to incorporate technology and modern practices to improve and increase their yields.
The Meru Dairy Co-operative plans to partner with the government in the school milk programme from January next year.