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Economy

Bid to slash semen price by 60pc for mass production

dairy cows
The government will enhance supply of semen to counties to be it readily available to farmers. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

The price of semen is expected to drop 60 percent under a Sh1.2 billion mass production lined up by the Kenya Animal Genetic Resource Centre (KAGRC) for the next five years.

KAGRC said the campaign that includes partnerships with county governments will cut the price of semen to an average of Sh200, from a current rate of Sh500.

At the moment, the country produces slightly over 1 million straws of semen annually against a consumption average of 500,000 straws with the low uptake blamed on prohibitive costs of the high-quality semen.

KAGRC chairman Geoffrey Kibui said the strategy will also focus on introducing a variety of animal species to their Artificial Insemination (AI) production chain as it targets to increase farmers’ yields and earnings

The resource centre is seeking additional funds to complete construction of the Sh400 million goat AI production centre at Ahiti Doba in Kirinyaga County which is first of its kind in Africa.

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“In addition to a Sh200 million chicken multiplier that is earmarked to increase production of improved indigenous chicken variety in the country, addition of new animal species in the AI production chain is aimed at substituting low yielding animals with hybrid ones to increase farmers earnings,” said Mr Kibui.

Livestock Principal Secretary Harry Kimutai said the government will enhance supply of semen to counties to be it readily available to farmers.

“We shall be providing semen tanks across the country to enable farmers to access AI with much ease,” said Mr Kimutai.

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