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Government allays fears of looming food shortage

30 January 2014, 16:20 Samuel Kisika

Nairobi - Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries Cabinet Secretary, Felix Koskei has assured citizens that there is adequate food to sustain the entire nation.

Koskei stated that although surveys revealed that there was a decline in staple food production in 2013 compared to 2012, there is no cause to raise starvation alarm because the country’s food security situation is stable.

“Strategic Grain Reserve has more than 2.8 million bags of food which will be enough to cover the months of May to end July when early harvesting of 2014 long grain crops is expected to commence,” said Koskei.

He noted that prices for most of the staple foods such as maize, wheat and rice have remained fixed compared to the same period in 2013 adding that only prices of beans and potatoes have declined marginally.

Koskei reiterated that most families are able to meet their food needs with normal coping mechanism based on normal food distribution to the very needy households.

However, he said his Ministry has put in place short, medium and long term measures to ensure that there is constant food supply in the nation. He revealed that such interventions include providing needy families with relief food from the National Cereal and Produce Board and through national expansion programmes.

He challenged citizens to adopt a variety of food production practices not to over-rely on maize produce alone.

“When you hear Kenyans say there is food shortage in the country, just know that there are all the foods except maize,” noted Koskei.

His assurance comes amid an outcry of starvation in Turkana County where the media reported a household that slaughtered a dog for stew.

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