The efforts by the Kenyan government to enhance food security and sustainable agriculture as part of its big four agenda has received a major boost from the Hungarian Government which has presented an organic water retainer solution in the Mount Kenya region.
The facility of the Hungarian innovation known as water retainer will not only prevent wastage of water but will also multiply its beneficial effects. The new technology will protect and give new life to soil and in turn to plants.
It also sets to save irrigation water by up to 50 per cent as well as increases yield and crop health in rain-fed cultivation while reducing loss of moisture through evaporation from the soil and regulates soil water balance, thereby increasing endurance of crops during drought.
As part of the increased dynamics in agricultural cooperation between Kenya and Hungary, the Embassy of Hungary is planning to set up a demonstration farm for value based Hungarian agricultural solutions that will improve the country’s food security.
While officially launching the water retainer at HortiCrop Research Farm in Mwea, Kirinyaga County over the weekend, Hungarian Deputy Minister for Agriculture Zsolt Demkó-Belánszky said the proposed demo farm will act as an entry point for Hungarian technologies where Kenyans will have a chance to experience the organic, biodegradable fertilizers, pesticides, soil conditioners that have made Hungary into an agricultural powerhouse in Europe.
Hungarian Deputy Minister for Agriculture Demkó-Belánszky. Courtesy
“Hungary is a leader in organic, GMO-free agriculture research and production as a result we would like to share our expertise and know-how with Kenya as it makes efforts to increase food security and self-sustainable for its population”, Demkó-Belánszky said.
The Deputy Minister for Agriculture said his Ministry was already working on a project that may establish a permanent outpost for introducing Hungarian agricultural innovation to the Kenyan market.
“Together with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade of Hungary, as well as with relevant Hungarian stakeholders we have proposed to establish a model farm in Kenya that will be able to showcase what the cooperation between Hungary and Kenya can offer to Kenyan farmers, researchers, and entrepreneurs”, he stated
He said the farm in Mwea will act as a catalyst for cooperation between the two countries by providing a place for Hungarian innovators who would like to participate in developing the Kenyan agriculture by utilizing Hungarian know-how and revolutionize irrigation and farming in Kenya, setting a benchmark for organic, health-conscious agriculture in the East-African region.
The water retainer innovation has undergone government inspection body KEPHIS to ascertain its healthy standards for any living organism. The product will be distributed to farmers by Twiga Chemical Industries Limited, its local distributor in Kenya.
Water-scarcity concerns have seen the Hungarian government set up a 200m EUR fund to foster the implementation of technological innovations in infrastructure development across the globe with the aim of utilizing water resources in more efficient ways.