Wheat farmers in Narok have appealed for financial aid from the government following crop failure.

Growers say they are unable to service loans secured from institutions such as Agricultural Finance Corporation.

Erratic weather patterns in the largest wheat producing area is to blame for the losses.

Wheat farmers owe the AFC Sh525 million while a similar amount is owed to other financial entities, said Narok AFC branch manager Ms Irene Koonyo.

Speaking Wednesday after taking journalists around various wheat farms in Narok North and South districts, farmers said they feared losing their animals - their other source of livelihood - if it did not rain in the next few weeks.

Outgoing national Cereal Growers Association chairman Hugo Wood and Narok Wheat Farmers Association chairman David Mpatiany predicted an average harvest of five and five bags of the grain per acre.

According to data from the Cereal Growers Association, the cost of producing wheat has shot up to Sh33,000 per acre and for a grower to break even - pay bills and make a small profit - he or she must harvest at least 12 bags per acre and sell it at Sh3,300 each.

Ravaging drought

“More than 100,000 hectares have been lost to the ravaging drought. Almost all farmers may not recoup what they spent let alone repay the loans,” said Mr Hugo.

He urged AFC to stagger the repayment over five years.