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IFAD vice-president holds discussions with Kenyan government officials

The vice-president of the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), Cornelia Richter, met with government officials to discuss the expansion of the funds efforts in helping Kenyan farmers

“With more than 75 per cent of Kenya’s population living in rural areas, IFAD is strongly committed to investing in the rural women and men who are so important to ensuring food security in these communities,” Richter said prior to her visit to the country.

Agriculture is an important sector for Kenya's economy and accounts for about 26 per cent of its GDP.

More than 40 per cent of Kenya's workforce is employed in the agriculture sector, according to a statement from IFAD.

Richter met with the cabinet secretary of the Minister of Agriculture and Irrigation, Mwangi Kiunjuri, principal secretary of Ministry for Water and Sanitation, Joseph Irungu and the principal secretary of National Treasury, Kamau Thugge among other government officials.

In her meetings, Richter discussed the role of small farmers in ensuring food security, challenges associated with climate change and opportunities for job creation.

Richter highlighted the Smallholder Dairy Commercialization Project, where families are investing in dairy cows through a grant scheme.

The project has reached more than 120,000 rural people, of which 60 per cent are women.

The fund said that farmers supported by the project had 37 per cent higher milk production and 31 per cent better prices due to the promotion of good quality feed, and training for animal care and breeding.