The County Government of Nakuru in partnership with Heifer International is piloting the Hatching Hope Kenya program. The program targeting 7 counties in the rural and urban centers is aimed at improving nutrition and economic livelihoods through production, promotion, and consumption of poultry.
Livestock and Fisheries Chief Officer, Dr. Enos Amuyunzu, says poultry production practiced across the 11 sub counties plays a key role in empowering communities. This is through the provision of income, employment and the improvement of human food and nutrition security. The County says it has been able to support the value chain through the distribution of 10,000 fertilized eggs distributed to 28 farmer groups.
According to Dr. Amuyunzu, the County is exploring the possibility of intensifying poultry vaccination in order to cushion small-scale farmers against the high vaccination costs as well as the high disease outbreaks. He acknowledges some challenges including poor feed quality, high costs of inputs as well as disorganized markets among others, and says that through partner synergies, small-scale farmers will be aided to avert them.
Heifer International Business Development Officer, Mr. Nathaniel Otieno, says that the project is targeting at least 2500 farmers in Nakuru linking them with strategic partners and trusted feed distributors, carefully selected to provide farmers with training on hatching and provide them with good feed.
The County says poultry population in Nakuru is currently estimated at 1.5 million for indigenous chicken, 212,200 layers, 275,900 broilers, 44,000 turkeys, 73,000 ducks, 14,500 geese, and 18,300 improved Kienyeji.
At the same, time last year the county produced about 67 million eggs (Layers and indigenous) valued at approximately Kshs. 874 million in addition to producing chicken meat estimated at 825.4 tons while turkeys produced 340.4 tons of meat, both valued at Kshs. 488.8 million.
This year the county distributed 43,400-day-old chicks to 241 farmer groups across the county. 96 automatic chicken incubators and their backup generators valued at Kshs. 6.8 million have also been distributed to 110 farmer groups in addition to providing training.