Busia County government and the World Bank have begun construction of an integrated modern fish market to the tune of Ksh 60 million.
The market which is set to be commissioned in a month’s time will play host to 500 fishmongers drawn from neighbouring counties of Kisumu and Kakamega.
According to Busia Cross-Border Fish Management Unit, the facility will also be fitted with modern equipment to support value addition efforts.
The body adds that locals will now be able to produce an assortment of animal feeds from fish through value addition.
The Ksh 60 million market is also earmarked to increase the quality of fish produced in the region.
Elsewhere over 2000 farmers in Mbooni, Makueni County have started growing macadamia and trees for timber production as an alternative to the coffee bushes citing reduced earnings from the crop.
The farmers claim their coffee payment has dropped by ten shillings in the past two years, eating into their earnings.
The farmers are now calling on both the National and County governments to assist them access markets for their new crops.
In Nakuru County, potato farmers who have not joined organized groups under the umbrella of the Potato Platforms supported by the National Agricultural and Rural Inclusive Growth Project (NARIG) have been urged to expedite the process.
The County Executive for Agriculture Dr Immaculate Maina said the ones who have already joined the Potato platforms were not only selling directly to Twiga Foods Company in Nairobi but to hotels where the county has negotiated good prices for them. She was addressing a press conference in her office.
She said farmers have scheduled harvest to coincide with when the county team negotiates for prices according to the prevailing market rate, which ensures that they make profits. This also prevents post-harvest losses that have been the bane of local farmers.
The leader of New Nyota group in Kuresoi, Salome Njeri said the organization of farmers into groups under the NARIG project has changed their fortunes since they no longer worry over the marketing of their potatoes.
Njeri said even the farmers who were skeptical in joining the groups were now trooping back because the marketing of farm produce has always been a big challenge for local farmers. She was speaking to KNA on phone today.
She commended the efforts of the County Agricultural department in streamlining the marketing of potatoes since they no longer have to hustle with brokers.
The development objective of the NARIG project which is sponsored by the World Bank is to increase agricultural productivity of targeted rural communities in twenty-two selected counties.