State backs plans to grow yellow maize


Agriculture Secretary Mwangi Kiunjuri. FILE PHOTO | NMG

The State will support farmers to grow yellow maize as it pushes to realise food security under the Big Four agenda.

Agriculture Secretary Mwangi Kiunjuri said the Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organisation had developed a drought-resistant variety of the yellow maize seed for distribution to farmers.

He said the produce would mostly be used to supply the animal feed sector “though yellow maize is billed to be more nutritious than white maize as a human diet”.

He said small-scale farmers would grow 80 per cent of the yellow maize.

Kenyans have for a long time frowned upon yellow maize considering that it is mostly imported as famine relief food its use as livestock feed in countries of origin.

Mr Kiunjuri said yellow maize contains higher levels of lutein, carotenoids and vitamin A whose deficiency among children in Africa may result in illness, blindness and even death.