U.S. Ambassador Robert F. Godec officially launched the planned 11.5 Billion KES ($115 million) Feed the Future Kenya Country Plan under the U.S. Global Food Security Strategy. The launch took place at the Accelerating Value Chain Development (AVCD) National Conference that was also attended by the President of Kenya, His Excellency Uhuru Kenyatta. The theme of the conference was “Developing Value Chains to Farming as Business with Technology and Innovations in Kenya.”
Kenya is among the 12 countries selected to champion the U.S. Global Food Security Strategy, which aims to reduce poverty and improve the ability of local farmers and pastoralists to cope with economic shocks such as drought.
“Together, we have reached nearly 900,000 Kenyan farmers. We helped them grow better crops and increase milk production, and then get those products to market. All told, working with partners we leveraged over KES 22 Billion in new assistance to the agriculture sector,” stated Ambassador Godec.
The country plan is a framework for implementing the second five-year phase of Feed the Future program. Kenya’s County Plan builds on the successes and lessons over the last five years.
AVCD is a U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID)-funded activity implemented in partnership with the national government and twenty-one county governments through a consortium of international agriculture research centers led by the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) based in Nairobi. The AVCD project has provided farmers with innovations and technologies in dairy, livestock, root and drought-tolerant crops, significantly improving their income, nutrition status and food security.
The two-day conference will involve panel discussions addressing the role of science and technology in agricultural development. Facilitated sessions for stakeholders and partners will identify opportunities on the way forward for development efforts in Kenya’s agricultural sector and how lessons learned can be incorporated into future programs.