Milk prices are set to stabilize due to good rainfall being experienced across the country.
According to livestock and Agriculture Principal Secretary Harry Kimtai the adequate rainfall in dairy-producing counties in the Central and Rift Valley has resulted to high production of milk.
The Rift Valley and Central regions produce the bulk of the milk in the country. However, other regions, including Eastern, Nyanza and Western regions also produce significant quantities of milk.
“I believe with increased production, prices will stabilise. According to the National Drought Management Authority, there is enough forage in the country, more so in the dairy producing-counties so we expect milk prices to stabilise,” said Mr Kimtai.
Currently, a packet of 500ml of milk is retailed at Sh55-Sh60, which is deemed as high by Sh5 by the consumers.
Speaking during the launch of the National Dairy Industry Awards 2019 in Nairobi, PS Kimtai explained that reduction of milk supply at the beginning of the year was catalyzed by dry weather conditions.
“The country experienced drought within a short period. There was a reduction in milk supply, and we had a challenge of low milk supply,” he added.
He further explained that in January, the milk prices dropped due to increased milk production at that time.
The National Dairy Industry Awards are aimed at recognizing outstanding actors in the Dairy Value Chain: fodder and milk production, milk bulking and aggregation, value addition and social inclusion.
The awards are set to motivate actors within the value chain and improve the dairy sector local.
According to the data from Kenya Dairy Board, the annual milk production stands at 5.28 billion litres from about 4.5 million heads of dairy cattle. However, only 600 million litres of milk is formally marketed per year with the country facing a deficit of 100 million litres of milk.
With approximately 1.8 million smallholder dairy farmers, over 1.2 million people have been employed by the sector directly and indirectly.
The industry, thus, contributes about four percent of the National Gross Domestic Production (GDP).