Small-scale tea farmers started receiving Sh42 billion payment popularly known as bonus Tuesday following a two-day delay occasioned by impromptu holidays last week.
The Kenya Tea Development Agency (KTDA) managing director Lerionka Tiampati confirmed that over 600,000 growers affiliated to the firm had the money wired to their accounts starting yesterday. KTDA is the management agent for the factories.
Last week, the government gazetted two holidays, Wednesday and Thursday, to enable Kenyans take part in the repeat presidential election on October 26.
“The holidays created a bit of delay because banks were not operational on those two days,” Mr Tiampati said in an interview.
The growers will earn the Sh42 billion, which is lower by Sh2 billion compared with a record high of Sh44 billion last year.
Industry report from KTDA indicates that farmers will get 76 per cent of the Sh78 billion turnover realised in the current financial year up from 75 per cent in 2016, reflecting improved operational efficiency.
Small-scale farmers’ earnings dropped by four per cent from Sh84 billion last year on account of drought that cut production by 20 per cent.
The record earnings in the 2015/2016 financial year was attributed to increased sales volume that stood at 272 million kilos compared with 233 million kilos registered in the current financial year.