Elgeyo Marakwet County has distributed more than 260 heifers to farmers across the county in a bid to increase milk production.
The dairy cows worth Ksh13 million purchased through the Equitable Development Act (EDA), have benefited farmers from Moiben Kuserwo in marakwet West Sub County who received 198 heifers, Sambirir in Marakwet East 30, Embobut 25 and Endo eight.
The pilot project which will be expected to be implemented across the County is targeting the dairy sector to ensure that more milk is produced in the County.
The Act ensures that 60 per cent of the development funds are distributed equally to the wards and the remaining 40 per cent goes to the flagship projects as per the County Integrated Development plan (CIDP).
Farmers from Moiben Kuserwo benefitted from 198 heifers, Embobut 25, Sambirir 30 and Endo eight.
Deputy Governor Wisley Rotich while speaking during the launch of the program said upon its success, project the project will be replicated in other wards across the county.
He said: “This project will directly benefit individual families. Those who have been given cows can now make money. In the next 10 months we should see the benefits of these heifers.”
The cows upon calving are expected to produce an average of 15 litres of milk per day which will translate to about Ksh 18,000 monthly. “This will be enough to send a student to secondary school and fundraising for school fees will be a thing of the past,” added the Deputy Governor.
He urged the farmers to take care of the cows and ensure that they are not driven into the forest for grazing.
Already, a 5000 litre cooling plant has been installed in Cheptongei which will also act as a milk collection centre. The County has also set up a milk processing plant in Metkei which has a capacity of processing 500 litres per hour.
The County has also invested in breeding the best dairy cows by subsidising sexed semen which will be sold to farmers at the cost of Kshs 500 instead of Ksh 6,000 market price and normal semen at ksh 200.
Moiben Kuserwo Member of County Assembly Thomas Kimunei thanked the residents for allocating funds to the project during public participation. “We hope this will turn around the economy of the area,” he said “we are piloting and if all go well, every household in Moiben Kuserwo will have a dairy cow.