The County Government of Nakuru has partnered with the Geothermal Development Company in refurbishing pyrethrum driers that use geothermal steam at Eburru in Gilgil.
According to Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries Minister Dr Immaculate Maina, the driers will not only hasten drying period and make work easier but will also help maintain quality.
She noted that there exist several geothermal-driven driers in the area but broke down with the collapse of the pyrethrum industry in the late 90s.
The minister was speaking when she oversaw the collection and weighing of pyrethrum at the Eburru Farmers’ Cooperative Society in Eburru where over 2 tonnes was collected.She highlighted that the farmers on that particular day took home over Sh400, 000 from the 2 tonnes collected.
Kentegra, an American company purchases a Kg of dry flowers at Sh200. Nakuru County Assembly agriculture committee`s Vice Chairman Wilson Mwangi said liberalization of the pyrethrum sector came with good tidings as farmers have a variety of companies to sell to.
He added that more needs to be allocated towards the sector urging Agriculture CS Mwangi Kiunjuri to channel money directly to counties for farmers to acquire clean planting material.
Ms Veronica Wanjiku, a pyrethrum farmer said the crop and the timely payment has helped her meet her medical bills unlike other years before.
Ms Ruth Kimani urged the County Government of Nakuru to increase the number of planting materials and work on timely distribution.
Dr Immaculate attributed the success of the first planting phase to the agricultural extension officers and the synergy between the private partners and the county government.
The county has a contract with Kentegra, the US biotechnology firm to develop and market the crop.
PHOTO/Photo/Suleiman Mbatiah :Farmers deliver their pyrethrum at the Kentegra buying center at Eburru in Nakuru.