New rice variety introduced in western province
Tuesday, January 10, 2012
By Chris Mahandara.
A rain fed rice species that promises to boost food production in the four counties of Western Province has been introduced in the area by the Ministry of Agriculture in collaboration with the Japanese Agency for International Development (JICA). The fast maturing and high yielding rice known as New Rice for Africa (Nerica) is ideal for small scale farmers since it requires little labour, capital and land to produce. Western Provincial Director of Agriculture (PDA) Mr. John Cheruiyot said through partnership with JICA rice milling machines will be in all the four counties to process the rice. He appealed to more farmers in the area to grow the crop to boost food security and empower themselves economically. He said the ministry of agriculture and JICA has introduced the rice in the area through the Rice Shiba Committee to boost food security and earn income for the local farmers. So far in the province, Rice is only being grown in parts of Busia and Teso. Mr. Cheruiyot made the remarks at Shisiru divisional headquarters in Kakamega central district where he witnessed the ground breaking ceremony of a site where one of the rice mills will be installed. Speaking during the same occasion, Kakamega County Council Vice chairman Councilor Dickson Ashivika said the rice will serve as an alternative subsistence crop for the region predominantly under maize and sugarcane.