Business Development Opinion

Try poultry, scientist challenges the youth

A number of high-end restaurants have mushroomed in the county over the past few years, especially on the Nairobi-Namanga road

By Jonathan Teikan

Moses Ole Paran­tai, a dryland scientist and academician in environment and natural resource management, has encouraged the youth to try their hand at poultry farming, noting that the booming hospitality indus­try in Kajiado presented not only a rare opportunity for poultry farm­ers, but also one that can greatly contribute to job creation.

Addressing a press conference at his Nalepo farm in Isinya town, where he hosted a field day for na­scent farmers, Parantai said that he had been a Kenchic contractor for about a decade. “I can confi­dently say that if the youth are go­ing to undertake this kind of ventures, then we will experience a drastic reduc­tion in the runaway joblessness in our country.”

A number of high-end restaurants have mushroomed in the county over the past few years, especially on the Nairobi-Namanga road.

Owing to the harsh climatic conditions experi­enced in different parts of the country, policy leaders have sought to impress on pastoral commu­nities the need to diversify their income streams.

Parantai, who worked in the Poverty Eradica­tion Commission during the Moi regime and was later reappointed to the same com­mission by former president Mwai Kibaki, firmly believes that the mindset that all what the people of Kajiado can do is livestock keeping is  retrogressive.

To raise the initial capital to start businesses, Parantai advised the youth to form chamas, or small co-operatives, further noting that, “When you are an or­ganized group, you can easily pool resources, and you will have the upper hand to secure contracts to supply to either poultry deal­ers or local hotels and restaurants.”

The farmer said that besides being a lucrative income generating activity — and a more cost-effective venture than livestock keeping, which is more vulnerable to climat­ic hazards, diseases and pests, high management costs, and inadequate vet­erinary services — poultry farming also provides supplementary feed­ing for cattle from poultry manure.

Parantai keeps hundreds of cows at his home which he feeds with natural hay and poultry lit­ter. Studies indicate that the litter is a safe source of proteins, miner­als and energy for cattle raised for beef.

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