Legumes food crop farming can end Kenya’s perennial food insecurity and generate income for farmers. This follows the coming up of resolutions by researchers and scientists that will help African countries gain food security and sustainable development at the seventh international food legume research conference in Marrakech, Morocco recently.
Scientists said Kenya should borrow a leaf from the initiative, adding that production of legumes helps intensify cropping systems by utilising under-exploited production niches. “The ability of legumes to fix nitrogen improves soil health and enhances the productivity of the subsequent crops,” said Dr Chris Ojiewo, a senior scientist and researcher with International Crops Research Institute for Semi-Arid Tropics (Icrisat) based in India.
Icrisat, which has regional offices in Nairobi, conducts agricultural research for development in tropical dryland areas usually seen as a resource-poor and perennially beset by shocks such as drought, poverty, hunger and malnutrition that usually push locals to depend on external aid. Dr Ojiewo noted that haulms produced from legumes serve as livestock feed, providing proteins and improving milk production and quality meat. Read more