Construction of a model farm at the Galana-Kulalu irrigation scheme is set to start following Wednesday’s award of a contract to an Israeli firm.
Green Avra will spend Sh14 billion on a 10, 000-acre piece that will be used as a model for developing the one million acres set for irrigation.
The irrigation project, which is estimated to cost Sh260 billion, will start next year and is expected to cut Kenya’s reliance on rain-fed agriculture that is blamed for the perennial food shortage.
“The process of putting up this mega irrigation project has now started with the signing of the contract with Green Avra the contract to start the construction of the model farm,” said Agriculture secretary Felix Koskei.
Mr Koskei said the government will spend Sh3.5 billion on infrastructure such as dams, roads, electricity and irrigation pipes. Investors will be expected to grow crops and set up food processing plants.
Mr Koskei said about 80 local and international investors have expressed interest.
The applications are being assessed and will be allocated by end of year, the minister said.