The Kenya Dairy Regulations 2019 stand suspended, the Kenya Dairy Board has announced.
This follows a public outcry that sought the suspension of of the regulations, with farmers reading ill plans by Brookside to take over the dairy industry in Kenya.
The regulations, if implemented, would have criminalised hawking of raw milk by farmers. The regulations required that farmers sell their milk to recognised processors before it is distributed to the consumer.
In a turn of events, the Board has reverted the implementation of the regulations, and also deleted them from their website. This happened after an eight-hour meeting of the Board at the at NSSF Building Nairobi.
“Dairy Regulations 2019 will force him (farmer) to take his milk to a cooling and pooling facility twice a day which might be a very long distance away. If he is lucky he will only spend Ksh100 for each return trip, spending Ksh200 in transport expenses alone for his milk to reach the collection point. Price paid for his supplied milk will be around Ksh25 per liter, if he is lucky enough to get paid at all. He is now left with a mere Ksh50 daily,” said disgruntled farmers.
It is a sigh of relief for the small scale farmers who used to sell their milk directly to the consumer, most of them to their neighbours in the rural areas.
The farmers said that the regulations were set up without consultations with the farmers and the consumers, hence it was set to benefit Brookside company, which has whitewashed the market by buying most dairy companies.
In its defence, the board has refuted the claims, and maintains that it will not compromise the safety of consumers.