Counties

Pyrethrum counties want to take over processing plant

Farmers in Nyandarua West district attending to their pyrethrum farm. PHOTO | JOSEPH KURIA | NMG
Farmers in Nyandarua West district attending to their pyrethrum farm. PHOTO | JOSEPH KURIA | NMG  

Pyrethrum growing counties are in talks with the government in a bid to take over the management of the cash-strapped Pyrethrum Processing Company based in Nakuru.

Nyandarua County Executive for Agriculture Agatha Thuo said there was a need for the processing facility to be managed by county governments which produce the crop. She said that pyrethrum processing was a devolved function and hence the need for the facility to be managed by pyrethrum growing counties.

She said that affected counties have been increasing acreage under the crop to ensure there is enough for processing when the Nakuru factory is finally handed over to them.

“County governments have been giving free seedlings to farmers so that we can increase production,” Mrs Thuo said during a Vision 2030 consultative forum in Ol Kalou town.

Mrs Thuo noted that many farmers in the county had embraced the pyrethrum revival effort.

“Many farmers in our county have now realised that the crop is a good money earner,” said Mrs Thuo, adding that a kilo of dried flowers was fetching about Sh140.

She said that Nyandarua county government has been procuring seeds for farmers to alleviate the problem.

“The county is also introducing new apple variety to replace the old one which is not suitable for the market because of its small size,’’ she said.