The United States Department of State has disbursed Ksh1.5 billion (USD 10 million) for Kenya and Ghana, funds which are expected to boost agricultural productivity in the 2 countries particularly within soil fertility.
In a statement from the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO), it was revealed the projects will promote climate-smart agriculture and adaptation measures as well as resilient crops.
“The additional funding from the United States will bring the benefits of this project to smallholder farmers and communities in the two countries,” remarked FAO Deputy Director-General Maria Helena Semedo.
President William Ruto inspecting his farm.
She added that the funds will also underline the vital role that healthy and fertile soil plays in building resilience to the impacts of climate change.
Meanwhile, the US emphasised that locals in Kenya and Ghana will benefit from the funding. Farmers will also receive technical assistance to improve soil fertility through efficient use of fertiliser and water.
The US aims to enhance soil fertility by employing various techniques such as comprehensive soil sampling and robust analysis of soil samples in laboratories.
“Central to the effort is the mapping of soil nutrients and functional soil properties at a detailed level through well-designed soil survey and analysis, as well as developing techniques to monitor them over time,” read part of the statement.
This comes after President William Ruto secured a Ksh31 billion deal with the United Kingdom on Tuesday where Kenya agreed to guarantee food production by setting aside more than 11,700 hectares for climate-smart farming.
President Ruto averred this is the only way Kenya can chart a path towards self sustainability.
Since ascending to power in September 2022, Ruto has championed more measures to encourage farming among Kenyans. One of the first things he did immediately after assuming power is to put in place fertiliser subsidies.
In August, the Head of State unveiled two loan facilities for farmers geared at granting them access to affordable loans.
“The credit will be provided at single-digit rates to further reduce our cost of production and enhance productivity,” Ruto emphasised.
Photo of subsidized DAP fertilizer at a Nairobi cereals store on March 9, 2023.