Bayer donates Ksh100m pesticides to fight desert locusts

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According to the latest Pesticide Reference Group (PRG) report, the Kenya received 120,000 litres Deltamethrin valued at Ksh70 million, with Uganda getting 50,000 litres of the Decis ULV, valued at Ksh30 million. The insecticide will treat 170,000 hactares of plantations in the two countries.

“More than 10 million people in East Africa are facing an acute food shortage due to locust plagues. With the planting season fast approaching, the menace still looms large. We hope to support vulnerable smallholder farmers, who are critical to food security, and are essential to our shared vision of a  food secure future,” said Mr Laurent Perrier, the managing director, Bayer East Africa.

According to the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), desert locusts present “an extremely alarming and unprecedented threat“ to food security and livelihoods. This risk, coupled with the current Covid-19 pandemic, recent drought, and floods, has brought additional pressure on food systems.

Earlier this year, a swarm covering about 2,400 square kilometres comprising 200 billion locusts hit the country, destroying 400,000 tons of food every 24 hours.  

“The devastation means a serious food crisis. Some 34 per cent of country’s GDP comes from agriculture and such could bring the country to its knees. This invasion is the worst in 70 years. It threatens the countries’ livelihoods, economy and food production,” added Mr Laurent.

The pesticides were produced at a Bayer industrial site in Villefranche Limas, France, which specialises in the formulation, packaging and distribution of plant protection products for farmers. The product was flown to East Africa by the national carrier, Kenya Airways.

Bayer East Africa has partnered with both the Agriculture Sector Network (ASNET) and Agrochemical Association of Kenya (AAK) to provide 170,000 litres of a pesticide to Kenya and Uganda. 

According to the latest Pesticide Reference Group (PRG) report, the Kenya received 120,000 litres Deltamethrin valued at Ksh70 million, with Uganda getting 50,000 litres of the Decis ULV, valued at Ksh30 million. The insecticide will treat 170,000 hactares of plantations in the two countries.

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“More than 10 million people in East Africa are facing an acute food shortage due to locust plagues. With the planting season fast approaching, the menace still looms large. We hope to support vulnerable smallholder farmers, who are critical to food security, and are essential to our shared vision of a  food secure future,” said Mr Laurent Perrier, the managing director, Bayer East Africa.

According to the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), desert locusts present “an extremely alarming and unprecedented threat“ to food security and livelihoods. This risk, coupled with the current Covid-19 pandemic, recent drought, and floods, has brought additional pressure on food systems.

Earlier this year, a swarm covering about 2,400 square kilometres comprising 200 billion locusts hit the country, destroying 400,000 tons of food every 24 hours.  

“The devastation means a serious food crisis. Some 34 per cent of country’s GDP comes from agriculture and such could bring the country to its knees. This invasion is the worst in 70 years. It threatens the countries’ livelihoods, economy and food production,” added Mr Laurent.

The pesticides were produced at a Bayer industrial site in Villefranche Limas, France, which specialises in the formulation, packaging and distribution of plant protection products for farmers. The product was flown to East Africa by the national carrier, Kenya Airways.

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