Treasury to release Sh1bn to revive miraa trade - Daily Nation

Treasury to release Sh1bn to revive miraa trade

Thursday August 2 2018

Miraa farmer

Miraa farmer, Ms Jennifer Kathure, picks some miraa leaves in her farm in Laare area of Igembe North. The Treasury is next week expected to release part of the Sh1 billion allocated to revive miraa farming. PHOTO | FILE| NATION MEDIA GROUP 

By GITONGA MARETE
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The Treasury is next week expected to release part of the Sh1 billion allocated to revive miraa farming, the Agriculture and Food Authority (AFA) has said.

Mr Clement Muyesu, the head of Miraa, Pyrethrum and other Industrial Crops Directorate, said they expect part of the money to be released as the implementation committee starts some of the activities.

“We will support the counties with funding so that they are able to monitor implementation of the task force (report),” Mr Muyesu said on phone yesterday.

The task force on revival of the industry was formed last year after miraa was categorised as a crop and placed under a directorate and allocated Sh1 billion.

The task force came up with recommendations including how farmers should be assisted to improve their crops.

COMMODITY BANNED

Other recommendations were to do with reviving markets in Europe especially the UK and Netherlands where trade in the commodity was banned.

After its launch in May this year, a technical team set up to oversee implementation of the task force's report identified activities that would be prioritised and is working on regulations to govern the sector.

While the regulations have been circulated for input by stakeholders, a baseline survey has been conducted and the report is being finalised.

This will give information on the miraa value chain mapping.

BUILDING SHEDS

Mr Muyesu said some of the initial activities include building sheds where khat will be sold in hygienic conditions, sinking of boreholes in miraa growing areas for irrigation and opening of offices.

“We are in talks with the Kenya Airports Authority (KAA) with the view to open an office at the Isiolo airport to facilitate export of the crop.

This means it will not be necessary to transport all the produce meant for export to Wilson airport in Nairobi,” he said.

Concerning the regulations, Nyambene Miraa Traders Association (Nyamita) chairman Kimathi Munjuri said they were informing and educating farmers and would present their suggestions when the food authority starts holding forums.