NAIROBI, Kenya – Agricultural expert Layla Liebetrau has urged the government of Kenya to promote smallholder farming in order to address the issue of food insecurity in the country.
Speaking on Tuesday, Liebetrau, who works with the Route to Food Initiative said there are many economic advantages in farming on a small scale land that can boost food security.
Adding, “Since there are few farmers who own large tracts of land to support industrial and large scale farming, small scale agriculture is the way to go if food security is to be realized in the country,” said Liebetrau.
“What the government needs to do is ensure that there are as many water points as possible to the smallholders which they can use to irrigate their crops,” she added.
The expert said budgetary allocation to the agricultural sector was trimmed despite the sector’s contribution of about 25 percent to the country’s gross domestic product.
“The allocation to agriculture and food is only 2.9 percent of the total budget, which is much lower than the Maputo Declaration on Agriculture and Food Security that stipulated that 10 percent of national budget allocation should be allocated to agriculture development,” she said.
Kenya is not the only African nation urged to advance agricultural activities. Global experts are urging most African countries to invest in agriculture as a way to create jobs.