Farmers in Bungoma County are counting losses after beans in their farms failed to yield to their expectations for the second time this year.
During the first normal planting season, farmers went into losses as the prolonged dry spell affected the flowering of their crops with beans being the most hit.
The rain came back after the first harvesting had taken place during the month of August and most farmers decided to plant beans to try their lack for the second time. The rain, was, however, a short one for it disappeared within a month leaving behind a trail of devastation and the beans dried up.
Most farmers got did not harvest anything from their farms and those who did, got very little that what they are used to.
Joseph Kitinda, a small scale farmer from Mbakalu, Kimilili Constituency in Bungoma County is a frustrated man. From his one acre piece of land, he only managed to get a 0ne 90-Kg bag, being over 12 bags off his target.
“This year has been disastrous. During the normal planting season, I got four bags. I was hopeful that during this second planting I would get something substantive but no, I only managed one bag. But I thank God, there are some of my friends who harvested nothing!” he said.
The dismal harvest this year has caused the prices of maize and beans in the region to skyrocket with a bag of maize weighing 90 kilograms going for between 3200 and 3600 shillings as compared to between 2600 and 2800 at the same time last year. A 90-kilogram bag of beans in most areas in the region is going for between 400 and 4500 shillings and the prices are expected to soar even higher.
Farmers are now thinking of switching to farming of other indigenous food crops other than relying on beans and maize alone.