The song and dance praised the tune to the Thiriku Coffee Growers Cooperative Society after it released the highest payout rates the society has ever paid to farmers.
Farmers will be paid Sh. 130 per kilo of coffee delivered, a rate they have never enjoyed before, company chairman Cyrus Waiganjo announced.
Speaking to KNA, Waiganjo said the farmers would pocket Sh110 while Sh20 would be used to pay the company’s loans as well as run the day-to-day operations of the company.
Waiganjo made the announcement during the company’s special general meeting at the company’s headquarters in Tetu, Nyeri County.
He said the company also saw an improvement in production to 304,887 kilos of cherries this year compared to 174,000 kilos last year.
Last year, the company published a payment rate of Sh100 per kilo which, according to the president, must have motivated farmers to step up their efforts.
“This increase in production is certainly related to the payment that was made last year of Sh100 per kilo. There is an improvement to Sh110 per kilo. So with this payment we expect even more improvement big,” he said.
He expressed hope that the farmers will achieve this season’s target of harvesting over 500,000 kilos.
The company already educates farmers on good coffee management and provides them with subsidized agricultural inputs to increase production.
“We sell our coffee directly to a company in the Netherlands called Trabocca who engaged with us because they noted from the start that even with low production there was a lot of transparency in our operations,” said he declared.
The company also recorded the best coffee quality ever, registering a positive class three after producing AA, AB and TB ratings that stood at 93%.
The society has 2,500 members, 1,900 of whom are active.
“It’s a figure that has gradually come down due to low coffee prices, but now our farmers have started to come back due to improved incomes,” company director Peter Ndirangu said.
Average coffee production per bush was 0.9kg but has now improved to 3kg per bush and aims to reach 10kg per tree in three years, he said.
John Gitonga, a farmer, described the rate as encouraging and urged his fellow farmers to improve production so that they can get more crops translating into improved incomes.
Muthoni Kagiri and Gathoni Ndung’u, also farmers, said they were delighted with the high incomes.
By Beth Ndirangu