A new potato seed production technology will be used to help farmers in
Nakuru County to multiply their seeds at home and enhance their continuous
production.
 
The technology, which is piloted by the International Potato Centre (CIP) and
the county government, will also address the scarcity of quality certified
potato seed.
Known as Rooted apical cutting, the technology will replace the use of
minitubers in the production of potato seed.

Agricultural officers from Nakuru being taken through the  rooted apical cutting technology.The new technology seeks to cure the problem of  shortage of quality potato seed.

Farmers are supposed to use the rooted apical cuttings as starter material
for seed production instead of certified seeds.
 
Twenty agricultural officers have been trained and will be deployed to the
wards to pass on the knowledge to farmers.
“The demand for rooted apical cutting technology has risen, hence the need
to create awareness among farmers,” said Dr Shadrack Nyawade, a CIP
consultant on climate-smart agricultural practices suitable for smallholder
potato farmers.
 
The new technology will boost the availability of potato seed, which now
stands at five per cent.
 
According to CIP, apical cuttings can be multiplied at least two to three times
upon first planting. Tubers are used as seeds with one cutting producing
between seven to 15 tubers.
 
The pilot project targets 75 farmers, who will receive 22,500 cuttings of six
different potato varieties. These are Shangi, Wanjiku, Konjo, Chulu, Nyota
and Lenan.

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