Ideas & Debate

EDITORIAL: Aflatoxin project timely

Mwangi Kiunjuri
The Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Mwangi Kiunjuri. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

The Agriculture ministry has taken the right step by setting aside funds for a bio product to control aflatoxins, the fungi that affect cereals, making them hazardous.

The toxin has been responsible for the loss of large quantities of farm yields in past years, besides posing serious health risks.

It is also worth noting that some locally manufactured food products have had to be withdrawn from supermarket shelves due to unsafe levels of aflatoxin.

The impact on revenues and on the economy when such products are withdrawn is huge.

The ministry is initially spending Sh400 million of the Sh7.5 billion required to buy the product, Aflasafe, ahead of the next harvests. This is a move that could have far-reaching benefits for agriculture, the cost of living and the livelihoods of farmers.


The Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Mwangi Kiunjuri has pointed out that the product could help reduce cancer incidents. The government should ensure that food products are free of aflatoxin.

Providing an antidote for the toxin is a positive step. Ensure the product is carefully-tested and well distributed.