KAKAMEGA, Kenya

Turkey’s state development aid agency on Sunday made a donation of equipment to the Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organization (KALRO) to boost food security in western Kenya.

The donations are part of the Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency’s (TIKA) Sustainable Organic Livelihoods Enhancement Program (SOLEP), which aims to end hunger by achieving food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable goals in line with the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) on agriculture and zero hunger.

KALRO received four modern Turkish hatchery development machines, each with a 4,800-capacity egg setter.

KALRO also received incubators, vacuum pumps, air conditioning systems, lab equipment, chicken feed machines with a 1 ton per hour capacity, incineration and disposal furnaces, and other apparatuses.

Dovicus Okutoyi, KALRO deputy institute director, told Anadolu Agency that “for a long time we have not had any lab analysis because of the lack of equipment that we use, and we’re grateful to the Turkish government for the donation of the equipment.”

“I’m really grateful to the Turkish government for assisting us,” he added.

The Turkish agency also invited farmers from around Kakamega to come and get free animal feed and free improved day-old chicks

Emre Yuksek, TIKA coordinator in Kenya, added that in addition to the machinery donation, “We are targeting smallholder farmers, especially women-headed households, to contribute to their income by providing them with improved local chicken during this pandemic.

“Instead of providing food, this facility will give farmers enhanced chicken breeds and also quality, affordable animal feed for chickens.”

Through TIKA’s assistance, KALRO says Kenya has the potential not only to meet its domestic poultry consumption demands but also produce surplus for export

According to statistics from TIKA, Kenya has an estimated poultry population of 31 million birds. Of these, 75% consists of indigenous chicken, 22% of broilers and layers, and 1% of breeding stock. Other poultry species like ducks, geese, turkeys, pigeons, ostriches, guinea fowls, and quails make up 2% of the poultry production.

Agriculture contributes 26% of Kenya’s GDP and is key to Kenya’s economy, employing almost half of Kenya’s population, according to the UN Food and Agriculture Organization.

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