Thursday 17 April 2014

SPEECH BY HON. WILLIAM arap RUTO, EBS, MP, MINISTER FOR AGRICULTURE DURING THE RELEASE OF NEW SEED VARIETIES ON THURSDAY 16TH APRIL, 2009 AT 2.30 PM, AT KILIMO HOUSE BOARD ROOM


Ladies and Gentlemen:
I am happy to be with you today to make public, the new seed varieties that have successfully completed the National Variety Release procedure. The importance of certified seeds is well recognized by the Ministry of Agriculture as a vital component in the agriculture sector development strategy.

We have witnessed a decrease in the percentage of Kenyans deriving their livelihood from agriculture. At the same time demand for food products locally, regionally and internationally has increased. This has created an opportunity to commercialize agriculture and integrate the value chain paradigm into agricultural development. These efforts will accelerate the contribution of the Agricultural Sector towards Vision 2030.

The increased agricultural productivity we continue to realize is mainly due to:

  • Improved service delivery
  • Better policies
  • Intensive utilization of high potential land
  • Increased use of irrigation in Arid and Semi Arid Lands
  • The adoption of appropriate agro technological packages which include among others, improved seeds and water harvesting.


Ladies and Gentlemen:
My Ministry recognizes that improved seed is one of the critical inputs in agricultural production. In combination with other inputs, seed synergistically enhances productivity.
My Ministry has over the years initiated reforms spur economic growth:

To pave way for the review of the Seeds and Plant Varieties Act (Cap 326) my ministry in partnership with our collaborators has finalized the National Seed Policy Document, put in place dispute settlement mechanisms through the Seed Regulations Committee and Seed and Plant Varieties Tribunal and recently, the Seed and Plant Varieties (National Performance Trials) Regulations, 2009.

To facilitate cross border trade in seed and plant materials within the region, my ministry is involved in the harmonization of the seed laws and regulations within Eastern Africa; Sudan, Ethiopia, DRC Congo and Madagascar.

To ensure that seed conforms to the required standards, seed quality control is enforced through certification by KEPHIS, the Ministry's arm responsible for quality assurance in seed matters. KEPHIS was established by an act of Parliament and mandated to undertake among others variety evaluation, release and registration, Plant Variety Protection, Seed Certification and Phytosanitary measures.

To enhance the regulatory role of KEPHIS, my Ministry is seeking to have KEPHIS established under an act of parliament, through KEPHIS Bill 2007.The seed industry comprises both formal and informal seed sectors. About 80% of the seed planted in Kenya comes from the informal seed sector. Within the last ten years production of seed increased from 12,000 metric tons in 2002 to 29,000 metric tonnes in 2008. In the same period seed imports rose from 1,200 - 5000 metric tonnes, while exports rose from 260-3000 metric tonnes.

Ladies and Gentlemen:
I can confidently inform you that we have surplus seed stocks in the country. At the beginning of 2009, the country's seed stock was 34,000 tonnes while consumtion is 20,000 metric tones, giving a surplus of 14,000 metric tonnes.

I hereby call upon KEPHIS to work closely with the seed industry to ensure that the quality of surplus seed is maintained for the next season. My Ministry will also increase efforts to raise uptake of certified seed by farmers. In addition, I call upon seed companies to diligently publicize their seed varieties.

Currently there are 72 registered enterprises in the country out of which 50% are members of Seed Traders Association of Kenya (STAK), who account for about 90% of the formal seed trade locally. Seed distribution within the country is quite efficient as outlets in form of stockists and retailers are well established.

Ladies and Gentlemen
Today I would like to present for use by the farming community new seed varieties of maize, rice and soya beans that have undergone the variety release procedure. These varieties have been bred for special attributes such as early maturity, tolerance to diseases and better yield.

I am therefore delighted to announce the following varieties.


1.NERICA Rice (Oryza glaberrima)

Variety name/code

Year of release

Owner(s)

Maintainer and seed source

Optimal production altitude range (Masl)

Duration to maturity (months)

Grain yield (t ha-1 )

Special attributes

1. NERICA 1

2009

KARI

KARI (Mwea & Kibos)

15-1700

90-100

2.5-5.5

Aromatic, Blast tolerant, Long grains

2. NERICA 4

2009

KARI

KARI (Mwea & Kibos)

15-1700

95-112

3.2-6.5

Blast tolerant, Long grains

3. NERICA 10

2009

KARI

KARI (Mwea & Kibos)

15-1700

86-93

3.5-6.7

Early, Long grains, Blast tolerant

4. NERICA 11

2009

KARI

KARI (Mwea & Kibos)

15-1700

90-105

3.0-5.0

High ratooning ability, Long grains, Tolerant to blast & drought

5. Dourado Precose

2009

KARI

KARI (Mwea & Kibos)

15-1700

95-115

2.3-5.5

Beardless

 

 2. soybeans (Glycine max)

Variety name/code

Year of release

Owner(s)

Maintainer and seed source

Optimal production altitude range (masl)

Duration to maturity (days)

Grain yield (t ha-1 )

Special attributes

1. Black Hawk

2009

KARI

KARI Njoro

800-1700

150-165

1.8

18% oil content

2. EAI 3600

2009

KARI

KARI Njoro

800-1700

53-42

0.5 – 2.5

17.8% oil content

3. Gazelle

2009

KARI

KARI Njoro

1200-2400

73-175

0.8 – 2.1

22% oil content

4. Hill

2009

KARI

KARI Njoro

1200-2000

140-145

1.8

20.7% oil content

5. Nyala

2009

KARI

KARI Njoro

1200-2400

82-163

0.7-2.5

17% oil content

 

 

3.       Maize (Zea mays)

Variety name/code

Year of release

Owner(s)

Maintainer and seed source

Optimal production altitude range (masl)

Duration to maturity (months)

Grain yield (t ha-1 )

Special attributes

1. WH601

2009

Western Seed Co.

Western Seed Co.

1500-2100

5-6

6-9

Tolerant to GLS & blight; Lodging resistant; Good husk cover

2. WS204

2009

Western Seed Co.

Western Seed Co.

800-1400

3-4

3-5

Tolerant to GLS, MSV, blight, drought & Low nitrogen; Striga resistant

 

 

                                                            Thank you

 


 

 
     

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