In Summary
  • Maize is currently grown in about 16,906 hectares with an average annual production of 37,184 tons.
  • Destruction of maize by the rains is likely to worsen the food crisis in the country.
  • By December, Nyandarua had a monthly deficit of 29,297 bags needed to feed its population.

gNyandarua farmers are staring at huge losses caused by the ongoing rains, posing a food security threat in one of the country’s food baskets.

The most affected crop is maize which is ripe for harvest and is now rotting on farms.

Maize farming is the second most important agricultural activity in the region after growing of Irish potatoes.

Maize is currently grown in about 16,906 hectares with an average annual production of 37,184 tons valued at Sh1.1 billion against 41,316 tons of potatoes valued at Sh8.3 billion grown in 37,860 hectares of land.

FOOD CRISIS

The destruction of maize by the ongoing rains is likely to worsen the food crisis in the country.

By December, Nyandarua County had 414,390 bags of maize against an annual consumption demand of 765,948 bags, a situation that would have been mitigated by the crop now rotting on the farms.

According to a survey released by the Department of Agriculture, 413,160 of the bags were in the hands of individual farmers, 1,230 were being held by traders, while millers had none.

DEFICIT

The document indicates that the county requires 63,829 90kg bags per month, meaning that by December, Nyandarua had a monthly deficit of 29,297 bags needed to feed its population per month.

The current heavy rains are a setback to the county that had recorded improved yields in the last two years with a rise from 21,870 tons of maize in 2017 to 34,289 tons in 2018.

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