Livestock keepers in Nyandarua County are set to access Artificial Insemination services at a subsidized cost with the establishment of a new substation set up by the Kenya Animal Genetic Resource Centre, KAGRC.
Speaking at the launch of the new semen production centre, Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Peter Munya advised Nyandarua County government to support farmers in their efforts to acquire high-quality semen and AI services to improve quality of breeds in the region.
“I urge the governor to consider upscaling the uptake of AI services provided by KAGRC to help the farmers have affordable high-quality animal genetics for improved production,” CS Munya said.
The KAGRC substation situated in Ol Joro-orok Constituency is also anticipated to supply livestock keepers in Nyandarua, Nakuru and Laikipia counties with high-quality semen at a subsidized cost from the current Kshs. 1, 000 farmers pay.
“The substation will also be home to young bulls for use in semen production for the country. The opening of this substation will enhance the uptake of AI services in the region and beyond and will provide employment directly and indirectly through the expansion of AI services,” CS Munya added.
Nyandarua Governor Francis Kimemia assured the residents that new prices will be rolled out soon, coupled with the employment of more extension officers to reach more farmers.
Ol Jororok MP Michael Muchira hailed the move saying that it will go a long way in improving reproduction through calving and production of milk and meat.
Muchira added that there was a need to review the prices to zero while creating awareness for farmers to adopt AI for improved breeds.
Falling milk prices
Speaking at the event, Ndaragwa MP Jeremiah Kioni regretted that the variance in farm gate and the retailing prices of milk in the country had hit hard on the toiling farmers.
He singled out Ndaragwa Constituency noting that they lose over Kshs .500 million annually from 80, 000 litres produced which is sold at Kshs 34 on average compared to Kiambu’s Kshs 60 a litre.