The County Government of Uasin Gishu has been pushing for the establishment of a farmers-owned milling plant in Kabenes for a while no through the MoiSoy Farmers’ Cooperative Union.
The plant already named MoiSoy is meant to serve maize farmers in Soy and Moiben – the two sub-counties with the highest production of maize.
It had already been agreed that farmers’ cooperatives from the two sub-counties would contribute funds through the purchase of shares that would go towards the setting up of the Ksh500 million milling plant.
Equipment for the installation of the milling plant were received by the cooperative union in July 2020, with construction works ongoing.
Governor Jackson Mandago notes that setting up such a plant is one of the ways farmers can find their own solution to the challenge of pricing that maize farmers have to face every harvesting season.
According to Mandago, members of the MoiSoy Farmers’ Cooperative Union were to contribute half of the money required to set up the milling plant, with the other half to be cleared by the county.
“We had already agreed to allocate Ksh200 million for this project that would have gone a long way to helping farmers by purchasing their produce and waiting for better prices or do some value addition,” the governor said during a public event in Soy Sub County.
Mandago is now advising farmers in the two sub-counties to continue buying shares that would ensure they own the milling plant.
One share for the milling plant is valued at Ksh5,000.
“Buy shares at MoiSoy and own that company. We will give you grants to facilitate any other costs of setting up,” the governor told the farmers.
“If the county puts all cash to set up the milling plant, it means it would be owned by the county and not farmers, and you know companies managed by the government don’t last and this is why we wanted this plant to belong to farmers,” he added.