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Legislators pledge to support the expansion of the CDA Mango plant in Tana River

Legislators pledge to support the expansion of the CDA Mango plant in Tana River

Mombasa,

Sunday, April 28, 2024

KNA by Sadik Hassan

The Parliamentary Departmental Committee on Regional Development has promised to support the expansion of the Coast Development Authority (CDA) Integrated Fruit Processing Plant in Tana River County to curb post-harvest losses.

The Committee, led by Kabuchai legislator Hon. Majimbo Kalasinga noted that with theoperationalization of the plant with a capacity to crush more than 1,200 tons of mangoes peryear, the livelihood of farmers has significantly improved.

The main overarching goal of the plant is to improve the living standards of coastalsmall-holder farmers and create employment for the youth.

The Kabuchai MP said the government is keen to enhance value addition to increasefarmers’ earnings.

The plant, he said needs to be expanded to increase the capacity of the machine to satisfythe market. Tana River is one of the major mango-producing counties in Kenya.

“As a committee, we should see what best we can do for this plant to move from 1000litres per hour to 3000 litres per hour to absorb more mangoes from the market,” said Kalasinga during a tour of the plant in Hola, Galole constituency.

He urged CDA to offer farmers competitive prices to discourage them from selling theirmangoes to exploitative brokers.

He was accompanied by Hon. Mwago Amos -MP Starehe, Hon. Mwalimu Kombe- MPMagarini, Hon. Peter Nabulindo- MP Matungu, and Hon. Paul Abour –MP Rongo and Hon.Major (Rtd) Dekow Barrow MP Garissa.

Magarini MP Mwalimu Kombe said they were satisfied with the plants progress, urgingfarmers to supply mangoes for continuous pulp production in the plant.

“They harvest immature mangos thus contributing to loss. I advise farmers to put moreeffort by increasing farm acreage of mangoes and to be careful during harvesting to avoidlosses,” said Kombe, adding that the plant will improve the economy of the Coast region.

CDA Managing Director CDA Mohamed Keinan said the factory was established primarily to cushion mango farmers in Tana River, Garissa, Lamu and Kilifi counties against anypost-harvest loss.

“To our satisfaction, we installed a one-ton-per-hour capacity crushing machine whichproduces pulp. The pulp is the puree that will sell to juice makers,” said MD Keinan.

“Because Mango is a seasonal production, there are certain months that we are not able tomake mango production. In that case, as an institution we were able to place a water processingline,” he added.

Deye Salim, Vice Chairman of Galole Mango Farmers’ Cooperative Society said theywill continue to supply mangoes to the plant as CDA offers competitive prices.

“There is direct impact although there are some gaps which must be addressed to move inthe right direction. In the past, mangoes used to mature well but brokers made farmers harvestimmature mangoes,” said Salim.

Through teachings from CDA, he added, farmers are now enlightened and farmers whodo business with CDA have improved their lives. He urged CDA to increase the plant capacity tobenefit more farmers.

Jamey Ayu, a Mango farmer said they have started to reap the economic benefits of theplant as farmers.

“I have educated my children up to the university level. We want the plant to beexpanded to crush more mangoes and create employment to improve our livelihoods,” she said.

Courtesy; KNA

courtesy; KNA

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