Kenya will next year release two hybrid maize seeds that are resistant to Maize Lethal Necrosis (MLN) which has been ravaging the maize crop, a researcher said on Saturday.
James Karanja, maize breeder at Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organization (KALRO) told journalists that already two varieties have been licensed to seed companies to reproduce for farmers.
“The varieties are already being produced by private seed companies and will be in the market by April 2020,” Karanja said.
He said that the seeds that have been developed through collaboration with the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Centre will save farmers from making losses associated with MLN disease.
Karanja said that so far only one variety DK 777 that has been commercialized by Monsanto is in the market.
MLN disease was discovered in Kenyan farms in 2011 and ended up causing devastation that led to farmers making huge losses.
The disease proved difficult to control forcing KALRO and global research organizations, private sector and seed companies to control the spread of the disease. Enditem