Twenty officers from Makueni County Government Tuesday, May 19th 2015 visited Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology to learn more about research and innovations that could be harnessed to spur socio-economic development of the County.
The team led by acting Chief Agriculture Livestock and Fisheries Officer, Mary Muteti, was received by acting Vice chancellor, Prof. Romanus Odhiambo, who commended the officials for showing interest in JKUAT research and innovation output; particularly in the areas of agriculture, engineering and technology.
Prof. Odhiambo informed the officials that the University had a number of innovations and technology transfer initiatives with a potential to transform livelihoods at the grass root levels in Makueni. He mentioned the tissue culture banana technology, soap making technology, value addition equipment and eco-block making machines that he reiterated were all relevant to Makueni residents.
“As a University, we are ready to work with Makueni County towards realizing its development agenda. Some of the technologies you will see during the tour can be deployed to productively engage the youth for income generation and wealth creation,” said Prof. Odhiambo.
Ms. Muteti informed the forum that Makueni County was in the process of establishing a multipurpose fruit processing in order to address post-harvest wastage and foster value addition of fruits produced in the county and beyond.
Through the County’s Agricultural Centre of Incubation project, Ms. Muteti hopes the university’s technology will be able to help them improve food production in the county thus enhancing food security.
The Director believes that by working together with JKUAT, Makueni County will be able to move away from subsistent farming to commercial farming hence improving the economy of the County.
“I hope that the university will be able to engage and train our youth on matters of agricultural technology enabling them to become productive members of the society,” said Muteti
The team visited engineering workshops, the Institute of Energy and Environmental Technology (IEET), Institute of Biotechnology Research (IBR) and Water Research and Resource Center (WARREC).