Maize Production Outlook and Current Challenges: Farmers’ Perspective
a Presentation by David Nyameino, CEO, Cereal Growers Association
at the Kenya's food situation: challenges and opportunities Roundtable
held at Laico regency hotel, Nairobi on 18th september, 2009


Mr. Nyameino made a presentation on Maize Production Outlook and Current Challenges: Farmers’ Perspective. He started by laying out the objectives and areas of operation of CGA. He then outlined the maize production challenges. First, he indicated that there is a definite shortage due to drought, with an expected annual production 22 million bags, from areas with a good maize crop such as Nyanza-Migori, Kisii, Kuria, most parts of Western Province, parts of South Rift (Trans Mara) as well as parts of North Rift. The other challenges include diminishing agricultural land, over-reliance on rain fed agriculture, poor cropping choices (over-reliance on maize), poor extension services, and disorganized markets. To deal with these production challenges, he suggested the following: land consolidation; long term land leases; making farming commercial (more investments); ensuring that technology matches the changing environment e.g. early maturing crops that need less water; irrigation (create dams & use run-off water); production of drought tolerant crops; diversifying eating habits; crop insurance; organized markets that will discover prices more transparently (commodity exchange and warehousing); and, improved quality to reduce post-harvest losses of 30%