The National Cereal and Produce Board, NCPB, has opened its stores for the purchase of local maize for 4,000 shillings per 90 Kg bag.
According to NCPB, only maize fit for consumption and met the required dry level by the East African quality standards would be accepted.
The maize prices had dropped to as low as 3,400 shillings in parts of the North Rift, where traders and middlemen have flocked after harvesting hit its peak.
NCPB Corporate Affairs Manager Titus Maiyo said that the board will procure maize at Sh4,000 per 90 kg bag and farmers will receive payment upon delivery of produce.
“NCPB has opened its stores to purchase maize from only registered Kenyan farmers at Ksh. 4, 000 per 90kg bag. The maize being purchased is for human consumption and must therefore strictly meet all the required quality parameters’ the statement read in part.
“NCPB opened its stores effect from Friday last week, and farmers can bring in their maize harvests as long as it meets quality parameters,” stated Mr Maiyo.
Maiyo said that the cereals board offers subsidized drying charges of Sh70 per 90 kg bag to dry grains to the required standard of 13.5 percent moisture content.
“Farmers can deliver their grains that are within moisture content of below 18 percent to silos that have drying facilities. Drying services are subsidized, and farmers can pay Sh70 for a 90 kg bag to have grains dried to 13.5 percent moisture content,” said Maiyo.
However, Maiyo expressed fears that many parts of the country were currently experiencing heavy rains which may prevent the grains from meeting the 13.5 percent moisture content requirement.
In Bungoma County, a 90-kilogram bag of maize is currently retailing at 4000 shillings while in Kakamega, a 90-kilogram bag of maize is retailing at 4300 shillings.
The farmers expect a bumper harvest of up to 60 million bags and the government has planned to buy 1 million bags of maize for the strategic grain reserves for a start.