Farmers threaten to stop maize production over pay increase

At least 500 maize seed farmers in North Rift are threatening to stop production if state owned Kenya Seed Company does not heed their demand for pay increase.

According to the farmers, despite the rising input costs, the company pays 65 shillings for a kilo of maize seeds, an amount they want increased to 100 shillings.

The farmers are further calling for Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Mwangi Kiunjuri intervention in the matter.

High cost of production with little to no returns is causing maize seed farmers to protest in Kitale end even threaten to quit supplying seeds to the state-owned Kenya Seed Company.

The corporation has an obligation to produce and market quality seed for the country’s food security but with farmers constantly threatening to pull out, many farmers speculate that corruption and poor management is causing the stalemate and will inevitably lead to the collapse of the company.

Currently Kenya Seed Company is paying them Ksh 65 per kilo, an amount maize seed farmers say they can no longer accept after an increase in cost of production leaving them with huge losses.

The farmers back a deal that will save them from further losses.

The farmers have now given relevant authorities an ultimatum to review their prices in a weeks’ time or they move to court to seek legal redress.

  

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