Kenya needs to increase investment in agriculture and rural development to transform rural areas into viable economic hubs.
This is according To the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) representative in Kenya Gabriel Rugalema who cites drought, rapid urbanization and general shift from farming to white collar jobs as impediments towards food security.
The Ministry of Agriculture in collaboration with FAO and development partners is working closely to create economic opportunities for the youth particularly in rural areas through formulation of the youth and agribusiness strategy that seeks to empower youth groups across the country to build their agribusiness capacity by organizing them into producer groups and linking them to markets.
Rugalema says to make agriculture attractive and reduce migration, Kenya needs to increase investment in agriculture and rural development to transforms rural areas into viable economic hubs.
Riding on this year World Food Day theme, Changing the Future of Immigration, Invest in Food Security and Rural Development, Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Willy Bett says his ministry is developing polices and institutional reforms that will create an enabling environment for the farmers and the youth to participate in agribusiness as a means of livelihood.
The policies include the Livestock feed policy, the National and oceans and fisheries policy and the National Aquaculture policy.
Bett says to boost farm yields, the government has targeted to procure and disburse 168, 480 MT of fertilizer valued at 5.03 billion shillings to be distributed to farmers across the country.
In the livestock sub sector, Bett says the construction of the bull station in Kitale, Trans Nzoia County is now complete and installation of the semen extraction and storage equipment worth 80 million shillings is scheduled for next week.
To support the blue economy, He says commissioning of the Monitoring Control Surveillance Centre in Mombasa will enhance surveillance against illegal and unregulated fishing on the country waters.