You are here
Home > News > El Nino may affect maize, weather experts warn

El Nino may affect maize, weather experts warn

The impending El Nino may affect maize that will be harvested between the months of October, November to December.

Weather experts warn that the prolonged rains will deny the harvested maize enough time to dry, a condition that may result in the maize having aflatoxin.

Some of the counties where the predicated long rains will have have serious adverse effects on their maize are Lake Victoria Basin, Highlands West of the Rift Valley and Central and South Rift Valley areas.

These includes counties of Siaya, Kisumu, Homa Bay, Migori, Kisii, Nyamira, Baringo, Uasin Gishu, West Pokot, Elgeyo Marakwet, Nandi, Kericho, Bungoma, Kakamega, Busia, Trans Nzoia, West Pokot, Vihiga, Laikipia West, Nakuru and Narok.

The forecast also showed a high probability that some counties in the Northeastern region are likely to experience above-average rainfall.

“This will be driven by warmer than average Sea Surface Temperatures (SSTs) over the Central and Eastern Equatorial Pacific Ocean indicating the presence of El Niño conditions. According to most of the global climate models, El Niño conditions are likely to persist throughout the OND season,” Gikungu said.

Experts have raised concerns that if maize is not properly dried, it could lead to aflatoxin contamination.
Nevertheless, Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organisation director general Eliud Kireger said the predicted El Niño may be a blessing for farmers in the Eastern and Central regions.

While visiting maize farmers in Uasin Gishu county last month, Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Mithika Linturi, having been tipped that El Nino may affect maize, said the government has acquired 100 mobile dryers that will assist farmers in drying their grain.

He said the dryers will assist farmers in reducing post-harvest losses by ensuring their maize is properly dried and stored.

“The mobile dryers will enable farmers to preserve the quality of their maize and increase their income. This is a significant development as post-harvest losses have been a major challenge for farmers in the past,” the CS said.

Similar Articles