The Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organization (KALRO) has announced plans to recruit 300 farmers in Busia County to promote commercial growth of indigenous fruits.
The Organization’s Research Assistant, Vincent Ochieng said the targeted fruits include, jackfruit, guavas, gooseberries and pawpaw.
Ochieng made the announcement when he paid courtesy call to the Busia County Agricultural Executive Member, Moses Osia in his office on Wednesday.
He said the county was leading in jackfruit production in thecountry because of its favorable climate hence the need to capacitybuild the farmers to enhance their production level.
We are partnering with USAID through Feed the Future program to promote the growth of over 100 species of indigenous fruits which have been ignored and yet they can be turned into commercial production.
Jackfruit is a case in point. The value addition derived from itincludes jam, antibiotics, wine, ethanol and multivitamin. The fruitcan also be grown for commercial purposes like in neighboring Uganda, he said.
Ochieng said they have identified three clusters and each of them willrecruit 100 farmers.
Cluster one comprises Teso North and Teso South while Cluster two comprise Nambale and Matayos with the third one encompassing Samia and Butula sub-counties, he stated.
Osia urged farmers to take advantage of the programme to plant Jackfruit in large quantities, saying apart from making profits from their salethe jack fruit tree also conserves the environment.
The Jackfruit has more than 100 uses. If farmers embrace KALRO’s idea and grow it in large quantities we might end up establishing a processing factory, he added.
Source: Kenya News Agency