Kalro receives Sh300,000 in EU funding to improve food security

Posted on :Tuesday , 30th March 2021

The European Union has given the Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organization Sh300 million to help with food security.


The funds will also be used to expand research and the use of climate-smart technology in the fight against climate change.


The AgriFI Kenya Climate Smart Agricultural Productivity Project will introduce the five-year programme.


The sub-grants would help at least 19 groups of farmers along the coastal strip. Each group will receive approximately Sh6 million.


The funds would encourage Kalro to develop climate-friendly methods to assist local farmers in increasing food production, commodity value chain markets, jobs, and improving livelihoods.


According to EU deputy ambassador Katrin Hagemann, the EU is attempting to address the climate change crisis and alleviate poverty by using quick, affordable, and approved agricultural technologies.


We're combining various aspects to help Kenyan farmers grow enough food for survival while also creating employment, she said, without affecting the environment.


Farmers' capacity to adapt to adverse weather patterns is being strengthened, according to Hagemann, and they are being supported to continue farming despite any challenges.


She mentioned that the funds would be used to purchase modern equipment that will allow for proper storage and processing in order to compete in the agribusiness sector.


Eliud Kireger, the director-general of Kalro, reported that the pattern of climate change is worrying, stressing the need to assist local farmers in implementing improved climate-smart technology to avoid more catastrophe.


He mentioned that they are enlisting more private investors to assist them in transitioning from ineffective to successful farming methods.


According to Kireger, Farmers have been given new skills to help them adapt to different climate changes.


“Some of the innovations we need people to implement are those that will help them maintain their farming systems,” Kireger explained.


In dry areas, the officer said, they encourage small-scale farmers to plant drought-resistant crops like cassava, millet, and sorghum, as well as provide information on how to achieve high yields in such conditions.


However, according to Kireger, Kenya's food production rate remains poor due to diseases and the use of obsolete farming technology.


Climate change has brought new pests and crop diseases, he said, but the government and its partners are working to grow advanced crop varieties that are disease and weather resistant.


Mwazaro Beach Management Unit in Shimoni, Kwale, was selected for the grants.


Msemanga Riziki, the project coordinator for the Mwazaro BMU self-help organisation, said the money was used to buy a motorcycle, a fishing boat, and to design a fish cage.


They intend to raise over 12,000 Tafi and Tilapia fish fingerlings that mature quickly to ensure full harvest and income with minimal impact on marine life.


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