An opportunity is beckoning for farmers after the European Union (EU) approved Sh800m to boost cassava growing country-wide.
About 140,000 farmers are targeted in this project meaning that you start looking for this money and see how you can benefit from it.
Due to the delicate nature of maize which requires a lot of rain and certain temperatures cassava and sorghum are seen as being able to grow well in areas with relatively lower rainfall.
Kenya is food deficient and imports more than half of its maize, wheat, rice and sugar requirements leaving a massive opportunity for entrepreneurs.
“If you plant correct crop in good time, you will not be disappointed. People call me on phone seeking to buy my cassava but I have never heard of a maize farmer being called on phone by a buyer,” says Dickson Ndaka, a cassava farmer in Makueni County.
The cassava project will be implemented through Self Help Africa to help enhance the quantity, quality and marketability of the crop in local and international markets.
Self Help Africa will involve 28,000 small holder farmers in seven counties of Kisumu, Homabay, Migori, Siaya, Busia, Kitui and Kilifi.
“The EU cassava project is in line with the agricultural sector goal of achieving an average growth rate of seven per cent per year through increased production levels,” said Agriculture secretary Willy Bett.
“The government through my ministry will be a major partner in strengthening the cassava crop and other drought-resistant crops so as to make the country food secure during drought periods.”
Mr Bett was quoted speaking last week at the launch of the Strengthening the Competitiveness of the Cassava Value Chain Programme in Nairobi by the Businessdailyafrica.com.
He said the ministry is currently focusing on diversification of food crops to change the Kenyans eating habits and over-reliance on maize as the only staple food.
Cassava is tolerant to drought and high temperatures.