Nairobi: Kenya is planning to increase the area under sugarcane cultivation to increase sugar production to support domestic need.
Anthony Muriithi, the interim director general of Agriculture and Food Authority (AFA), said, “The country has a capacity of tripling sugarcane yields through irrigation. The trials at Kwale, coastal Kenya are positive, and we are planning to extend them at other places too.”
Government is also providing soil testing of the land to help farmers to take up appropriate crop for cultivation and focus on cultivable sugarcane land.
Cane supports the livelihood of six million people in the country. Kenya is facing sugar scarcity; therefore, it is forced to import sugar from other countries. Sugarcane farmers in the country claim that they are facing huge losses due to the cheap sugar import in Kenya.
The country faced drought in 2017/18, which has impacted the sugar output and the industry is yet to recover from the same. Also, the decline in sugar production was attributed to less production by sugar mills. Also, shut down of Mumias, Chemelil, and Kwale Sugar Company deteriorate the condition. Many sugar mills failed to operate due to scarcity of sugarcane, which has affected the sugar output.
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