Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Nguruman farmers keen on Market curtails

Farmers within Nguruman irrigation scheme have been keen on market curtails which has since then exploited their potential to have their right share in their pockets. Intensive training on market survey and gross margin analysis by ALIN and Ministry of Agriculture (MOA) has played a vital roles in enlightening the farmers to change their perspective and embrace 'farming as a business' model.

Many a times farmers have registered  huge losses which have lowered their chances to sustain themselves economically and due to their dark experiences, they resolved to form marketing groups depending on the produce to keep off middle men who make a kill out of their fortunes. During a meeting organized by MOA, farmers shared their grievances and agreed to work together to avert their losses.

DAO Adressing meeting participants

"Its something we can work out if we cooperate as farmers and work closely with other stakeholders... we look forward for a time when we will be able to get our 100% share from our produce..." Said Mr Munyere, one of the farmers. "Some years back we used to earn good money from our farms but when we welcomed brokers, things changed completely..." Added Mr. Toroke, community elder.

During the meeting, The Sub-county Agricultural Officer, Mr Henry Siro urged the farmers to embrace Mobile technologies and online platforms to ensure they have up-to-date information on markets and emerging farming technologies and recognized ALIN's bold move to launch a mobile platform Sokopepe which is user friendly and every farmer can use with ease. He also urged farmers to come out and show what they are able to produce so they can sell their produce through the platform.

A community elder contributing to the discussion

In response farmers narrated how they have lost lots of money to buyers who carry their farm produce and promise to send them money only to disappear.

"We have in the past seen people posing as buyers only to walk away with our hard earned produce and never come back... we now prefer using other platforms like sokopepe where we are sure our produce will be handled safely.." Said Mr. Mburu who practices mixed farming.

The farmers agreed with one voice to cooperate with other stakeholders to ensure they benefit fully from their produce and make use of resources and information within their reach to improve their livelihoods.

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