Youth urged to venture into pyrethrum farming
Written by James Munyua and Mercy Kihugu
The youthful population in Nakuru have been urged to take part in pyrethrum revival by venturing into pyrethrum farming to get income and ensure the crop’s sustainability into the future.
This was the clarion call by the Nakuru leadership led by Deputy Governor H.E David Kones during Farmer’s Harvest Celebration Day organized by Kentegra Company in Elburgon Ward to farmers in Kentegra’s Turi and Elburgon Zones.
The event aims at celebrating achievements made in the sector and awarding farmers who have excelled in pyrethrum growing.
Revival of pyrethrum growing in Nakuru County is gathering pace with more farmers starting to embrace the cash crop compared to previous years.
The revival has also received a major boost through pyrethrum companies who are supporting farmers to access planting materials, training, market research and development.
Kentegra Company has been at the forefront of these revivals with the company offering much-needed support to the farmers across 8 counties Nakuru County being one of them.
Kentegra is a biotechnology company specializing in the production of organic insecticide pyrethrum for home biocide, agricultural and pharmaceutical pesticide markets.
Speaking during the event the Deputy Governor hailed Kentegra company for their participation in the revival of pyrethrum in Nakuru County which he said played a big role in paying for his education when he was in school.
“I want to thank Kentegra Company for the continued support they have given to our farmers. They have given them training at absolutely no cost, seeds and seedlings, driers, fertilizer and at the end they buy the product from them,” he said.
He further implored farmers to increase the production of the crop by adding more acreage to the existing ones saying pyrethrum has good returns. This will also cement Nakuru as a pyrethrum growing hub.
On his part the Chief Officer for Agriculture Kibet Kurgat said the County Government under the leadership of H.E Governor Susan Kihika will allocate Ksh. 27 million to the sector to help farmers get planting materials at a subsidized price.
Kentegra Head of Field Operations and Farmers Services Micah Thuo reiterated the commitment of the company in assisting pyrethrum revival in Nakuru by helping farmers with materials and markets for their produce.
“We are in the process of coming up with a program that will encompass more youth in our efforts to make pyrethrum great again in Nakuru County. We will make sure for sustainability purposes more youth join in the farming of the crop,” Thuo said.
Kentegra seeks to increase the acreage in the Turi-Elburgon zone from 97 to 250 acres this year and has contracted a total of 7,000 farmers in the county with a total acreage of 1,500.
One of the success stories is from Stephen Ngaruiya a farmer from Kapsita who started pyrethrum farming in 2022 and makes an average of Ksh 50, 000 per month in his 2 acres piece of land.
Ngaruiya noted that returns from pyrethrum had significantly increased his income as compared to other crops
Turi zone comprises Elburgon and Turi wards where the zone has 339 farmers who produced 37,068 kilos of flowers translating to Ksh 9,267,000 income for farmers in 2022.
The Deputy Governor had earlier visited Turi Research and Development Center where Kentegra propagates and clones seeds, plants them in nurseries and later sells them to farmers.
Nursery, research and development manager Collins Kimutai took the deputy Governor through the research farm and explained the efforts Kentegra is making to come up with more quality and resilience seeds to increase farmers’ output and earnings.