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Linturi: Maize imports will bring down the price of Unga

By Winnie Onyando December 24th, 2022 1 min read

The government says it will import maize, rice, and sugar in a bid to curb a looming food shortage in the country.

Agriculture Cabinet Secretary (CS) Mithika Linturi confirmed the stance.

He explained the country’s annual maize consumption is 52 million bags compared to the projected production of 34 million bags in 2022.

The shortfall is attributed to severe drought and attack by armyworms.

“In order to cater for the deficit, the government has found it imperative to import 10 million bags of maize to enable the country to have adequate stocks to last until the next major harvest of July/August 2023,” said Linturi.

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“The government will not spend a penny on the importations because we do not have that kind of money and we are urging the private sector to chip in. The imports will help us lower the price of food.”

Linturi says there could be a shortage of maize by March 2023 which has to be addressed immediately

“This is why we have allowed anyone who is able to bring in maize within the country to take care of the deficit. With increased supply, we will bring down the price of maize. We invite anyone with that capacity to bring in maize, rice, and sugar.”

He also announced duty imports have been temporarily waived.

The price of maize flour, Kenya’s staple food, currently stands at about Sh220. This is about double the current price.