Kenya has launched a national agricultural soil management policy to help in sustainable management of the resource, a senior government official said.
Kenya’s Cabinet Secretary for Agriculture, Livestock and Blue Economy Willy Bett said on Monday that the policy is aimed at raising awareness on the importance of soil and its service to the society.
“We are looking forward to incorporating all stakeholders in achieving better soil protection given that Kenyan farmers are currently getting barely 25 percent of the potential yields,” Bett said at the launch.
He said the multi-functionality of soil requires partnership and coordination with partners since many industries depend on the sustainable use of soils.
Soils in Kenya are rapidly losing the ability to supply both the micro and macro nutrient elements in the amounts, forms and proportions required for optimum plant growth.
Studies show that Kenya’s soils are generally in poor state and deteriorating due to climate change, soil erosion and loss of soil fertility.
“We have to prepare for future challenges by enhancing soil capacity to adapt to pressures under a changing climate,” Bett said during the launch.
The policy gives direction on how agricultural soils will be managed for increased agricultural productivity and production while conserving the environment at the same time.
The policy creates an enabling environment for the management of agricultural soils in Kenya, research and development, quality assurance and coordination of various players in the soil sub sector.
It outlines measures and guidelines that the government and other stakeholders shall undertake to achieve optimal development of the sub sector and from which laws governing its administration and management shall be formulated.