Kenya on Friday launched Irish potato regulations to address constraints and challenges faced by the sub-sector.

Mwangi Kiunjuri, cabinet secretary for the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries and Irrigation (MALFI), said there has been an increased challenge in marketing quality produce that often leads to exploitation of farmers.

“The new regulations seek to put in place measures that will improve standards and streamline stakeholder operations,” Kiunjuri said during the launch in Nairobi.

Kiunjuri noted that when fully implemented, the potato regulations will have positive economic and social impacts on the communities and the economy as a whole.

He noted that the regulations will usher in increased yields of Irish potato, increased demand for appropriate seed and inputs, increased private investments in seed production, potatoes production, warehousing, agro-processing and marketing of potatoes and increased savings and investments by farmers.

“The regulations will help streamline production, trade and interactions among key players in the sub-sector,” said Kiunjuri.

Hamadi Boga, principal secretary for agricultural research at MALFI, said that about 1.2 million tonnes of potatoes worth over 40 billion shillings (400 million U.S. dollars) is produced each year.

“Through the regulations, we intend to increase potato production from 1.2 million metric tons in 2018 to six million tons per year by 2022,” he added. Enditem

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