Project to help ‘mountain growers’ adopt to climate change rolled out in Murang’a

Kage Njoroge @PeopleDailyKe

A project aimed at empowering smallholder farmers in Africa to handle emerging challenges caused by climate change has been rolled out.

The initiative funded by the government of Finland intends to build the capacities of peasant farmers to tackle increasing risks on crop production from climate changes. Farmers will be introduced to new agricultural technologies, traditional and new farming techniques and how to fight and control pests and diseases afflicting crops due to weather changes.

According to Dr Regis Babin, a top entomologist, the initiative is being implemented through Adaptation for Ecosystem Resilience in Africa project (Aferia) whose headquarters is at the International Centre of Insect Physiology and Ecology (Icipe), Nairobi.

Icipe has conducted extensive research on the challenges and the simplified findings were being taken to the farmers for practice.“Farmers are expected to adopt the research solutions and use them in their agricultural activities,” he told officials of coffee societies during a meeting in Murang’a called to launch in the county.

The objective is to enable farmers boost yields using new methods and improve their livelihoods from their incomes.   Aferia is also being implemented in Mt Kilimanjaro region in Tanzania; Jimma Highlands, Ethiopia; Taita Taveta hills.

Aferia coordinator, Dr Tino Johansson, said peasant farmers need to embrace pest control sciences to survive against new threats. “Coffee is a crucial crop and a global beverage, but  its  production is under threat from climatic change,” he said.

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