Kenya John Deere branch marketer Vincent Omondi tests on the tractors in the Thika Technical Institute grounds on February 25, 2017. The cmpany is offering financial asset loans to farmers. Photo by Laban Robert.
Farmers can access up to 80 per cent machinery financing with the entry of US-based tractor and other implements manufacturers, John Deere.
To qualify, marketing officer Vincent Omondi said a farmer only needs a bank statement of eight consecutive months demonstrating financial flow.
“It doesn’t matter the bank you of the farmer. Farmer only needs to raise 20 per cent of the total amount for the given machine. CFC Bank, which has partnered with John Deere, gives the rest upon agreed repayment terms,” he said.
The repayment period varies depending on the machine that the farmer needs, but Omondi said the terms are ‘flexible’.
Besides tractors, the farmers can access other machineries such as sprayers, harvesters, hay and forage balers, planting and seed equipment, among others.
The Food Agriculture Organisation says agro produce in Africa is hampered by use of traditional methods such as family labour and other old farming methods. Technology inclusion in agriculture is still low.
Given that the machinery cost is unaffordable to more than 90 per cent of the farmers, who produce for domestic consumption, commercialisation of production for food security remains low.
A tractor without attached implements like a disc plough can cost more than Sh2 million, depending on the machine’s power and the number of extra functionalities.
Omondi said farmers see mechanisation as ‘too expensive’ to attain.
“Farmers need not buy everything at once. After acquiring the tractor, the farmers can buy a disc plough that will help them in cultivating theirs pieces as well as for neighbours. Raising the extra money from ploughing for others can be re-invested in buying a trolley for pulling goods,” he said.
The attachment implements can be bought progressively to help the farmer raise extra income from other services for repayment of the loan.
The easiest method is buying the given season implement. For instance if it is a planning season, a disc plough is the best one for extra revenue.
John Deere has branches in major towns in the country such as Nairobi, Eldoret, and Kisumu.
Besides its own machinery, the US-based company sources various equipment from globally accredited firms before branding them after passing quality tests.
Omondi can be reached on +254707669378