Sacco engages farmers in agribusiness

Siraji Saving and Credit Cooperative Society (Sacco) Chief Executive Officer, Felix Ochieng Muhando has urged farmers to embracing modern farming technology for improved food production.

Speaking to KNA at the Sacco office in Nanyuki town on Monday, Muhando said the cooperative has started agribusiness program which provides a wide range of agricultural knowledge in regard to modern agricultural practices and also connects farmers with certified suppliers for farm inputs.

Embracing new farming technology is the way to go if counties and the national government are to fulfill food security as one of the country’s big four agenda, he noted.

The Sacco will work closely with partners like Bayer East Africa among others in helping small scale farmers through training to ensure food security in our country, being one of President Uhuru Kenyatta’s big action plan, added Muhando.

The CEO also said the Sacco is seeking willing partners to help in establishing technology which would help to monitor farmers and their activities through their phones.

Siraji Sacco was started by farmers who were working in Siraji farms and has grown immensely in service provision to its over 100 affiliated member groups.

According to the CEO, the Sacco, which started in 1996 with only 90 members, has grown to the current membership of 8, 500.

It started the agribusiness program to support its members after realizing once they retired and retreated to farming, they were experiencing problem of capital and agricultural information, Muhando observed.

He also noted that the Sacco also insures different crops as advised by Kenya Union of Sacco (KUSCCO) � Agribusiness Unit.

The Sacco serves wheat, potatoes, milk, French peas and tomato farmers among other crops in Laikipia and Meru counties.

It also works closely with World Council of Credit Unions (WOCCU) staff serving in Mt. Kenya region to train Sacco leaders who in turn train their farmers

On its social responsibility policy, Muhando out that the Sacco sponsors a number of needy students joining form one, by paying their school fees from form one to four, besides providing text books to schools.

The CEO urged county governments to partner with Saccos through funding and providing field officers to train and monitor farmers in their areas of jurisdiction.

Source: Kenya News Agency