Livestock health is critical to the success of Nyandarua’s dairy sector, His Excellency Governor Francis Kimemia has said.
Speaking during a meeting between the County Government and County-based veterinary doctors at the Catholic Hall in Ol’Kalou town this afternoon, Governor Kimemia said Nyandarua’s dominance in the sub-sector over the years was largely due to the ability of indigenous farmers to fend off major livestock infections.
“Our responsibility, right now, is to enhance artificial insemination, allocate more funds towards the wider sub-sector, register local stakeholders in the industry and license agrovets,” he said.
Regulation is expected to safeguard livestock and the wider sub-sector from quacks.
Governor Kimemia said the County Government will partner with the doctors to equip them with skills they will need to train Nyandarua’s farmers in effective farming so that the livestock sub-sector can contribute to the economic growth of the County.
“The sub-sector is currently operating at 30 per cent of its potential, with a population of 346,430 cows and production of 217 million litres annually, which is way below the optimal 700 million litres,” he said.
Nyandarua’s farmers earn an estimated to Kshs. 11 billion shillings annually from the sale of livestock products.
However, most of them continue to grapple with high costs of production, mainly due to the poor quality of inputs, particularly commercial feeds.
“My Government is supporting adoption of modern technologies; value addition of livestock products; initiating marketing systems; treating diseases; and rehabilitating our roads,” said Governor Kimemia.
The County Government is also reviving such cash crops as pyrethrum, while introducing newer ones like bamboo and sugar beetroot.
In attendance was Her Excellency Deputy Governor (Mrs.) Cecilia Mbuthia and several other senior County Government officials.