KENYA’S COFFEE FARMERS TO BENEFIT FROM THREE-YEAR SUBSIDY PROGRAMME

NAIROBI– Coffee farmers in 21 counties in Kenya are set to benefit from a three-year subsidy programme aimed at lowering the costs of farm inputs in the wake of calls for speedy legal reforms to address cartels, the high cost of production and labour which are curtailing growth in the coffee sub-sector.

A market report from the Nairobi Coffee Exchange indicates that coffee earned the country 776 million shillings (about 7.6 million US dollars) in 2017 compared with the previous year’s 916 million shillings, representing a 15 per cent decline. Stakeholders attributed the decline to cartels and the high cost of production and labour.

Governors from the 21 coffee-growing counties called for reforms in the sub-sector in an effort to curtail activities of unscrupulous dealers who are fleecing coffee farmers.

County governments have rolled out a three-year subsidy programme targeting coffee farmers that will see them purchase farm inputs at affordable prices. The program also includes rehabilitation of coffee factories and phasing out of old coffee species, some of which were introduced by the former colonial government.

Despite increased demand for Kenyan coffee globally, production in the country is on the decline and the government has reiterated its pledge to rejuvenate the sub-sector.

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK