Kenya: The Government has flagged off 25,000 metric tonnes of subsidised fertiliser to be sold to farmers at low prices for the coming planting season.
Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Felix Koskei received the fertiliser at the Port of Mombasa yesterday.
The CS said the county governments should also complement the national government by importing subsidised fertiliser given that agriculture has already been devolved.
He said another consignment of 3,200 metric tonnes of the fertiliser is scheduled to arrive in the country on February 6 and a further 16,500 on February 15.
“The 50050MT top dressing fertiliser is expected in the country in March. I urge North Rift counties to avail lime to farmers to reverse soil acidity and to also import additional fertiliser,” said Koskei.
The Cabinet secretary said fertiliser prices were expected to drop this season compared to the similar period last year, noting that DAP and NPK will trade at Sh1,800 per 50kg bag while CAN will be sold at Sh1,500 per bag.
Last year, the subsidised fertiliser was trading at Sh2, 000 for a 50 kg bag, meaning that the prices have dropped in a move aimed to reduce the cost of farming and ensure high profitability.
Koskei said the fertiliser is expected to be distributed to all Kenya Cereals and Produce Board (KCPB) centres across the country.
He said the drop in the cost of production should reflect in the prices of foodstuff and called on traders to direct millers and food retailers to lower the prices with immediate effect.
“There are no reasons whatsoever for millers to hold onto the earlier prices and exploiting consumers especially with the current hard economic situation, ” said Koskei.
The Government has continued to pile pressure on traders, especially maize millers to lower the prices of the commodities.
“We as the Government are concerned that despite reduction in cost of production, millers and retailers especially of maize have not yet reduced prices of flour,” said Koskei.