Duxton’s Agri Bits and Pieces – Vol. 407
Posted on: December 21st, 2018



This weeks quote is based on advocating high-level technology for agricultural developments. Drones with compact multispectral imaging sensors, GPS map creation through onboard cameras, heavy payload transportation and livestock monitoring with thermal-imaging camera-equipped drones have been tested on livestock farms. This technology is expected to improve agricultural management and allow a lot of potential for agriculture in general. The Chief Executive Officer and founder, Seyi Oyenuga mentioned:


“Drones can be made specifically for business use and farming in particular, they can capture geo-referenced, overlapping, high-resolution images of 400 hectares in a single flight; can seamlessly upload data and produce agricultural analytics from their data management systems, and fly autonomously from take-off to landing.” – Seyi Oyenuga


Nigerian Tribune, 16th of December 2018






Research Looks at Natural Fertilizer for Greener Agriculture, Cleaner Water

Chemical fertilizer is made of nutrients like nitrogen and phosphorus causing them to require a huge amount of energy to produce. The University of Michigan has completed research on finding green alternatives that are environmentally friendly. A farmer near Vermont, Dean Hamilton has adapted to this research and used human urine to fertilize his hay field.

Harvesting the resource of urine — which is, after all, full of the same nutrients as chemical fertilizer — will fix two problems at once: eliminate waste and create a natural fertilizer.

The Rich Earth Institute has been using urine as fertilizer since 2012. Kim Nace says they collect about 26,000 liters a year, thanks to a loyal group of dedicated donors.

They pasteurize the urine to kill any microbes, and then it is applied directly onto hay fields like Hamilton’s.

“There are three things we really are trying to do with the urine in this kind of next phase. We’re trying to concentrate it. We’re trying to apply technologies to reduce odor, and we’re trying to deal with trace contaminants like the pharmaceuticals,” she said.

“We know pharmaceuticals are a problem for aquatic organisms and water systems,” Love said. “It’s debatable about the impact on human health at very, very low levels. Independent of that, I think most people would prefer that they not be in their food.”

Their efforts could make agriculture greener and our waterways cleaner.

Faith Lapidus, VOA News, 16th of December 2018







What Kenya can learn from Ireland on food security and agriculture

Similarities between the agriculture and food security between the two countries have been found.

Like Kenya, Ireland has suffered from food insecurity and famine. You may not know that Ireland experienced a huge famine 170 years ago that resulted in over one million deaths and mass emigration of up to 2.5 million more. It had a devastating impact on our country; economically and socially.

Like Kenya, Ireland was hugely reliant on agriculture for family incomes and national growth. Ireland was a largely agrarian country with small family-owned farms and a mainly pastoral animal-based agricultural system, with grassland mainly used for milk, beef and sheep production. Ireland was dependent on only one or two crops; mostly potatoes (or what Kenyans call the Irish potato!).


However, also like Kenya, Ireland was determined to become food secure and to ensure that it’s people never suffered through famine again.


While Kenya is still suffering from food security related problems, the government of Ireland, food and agricultural agencies, farmers and the food industry have been able to make Ireland one of the most food secure countries today.

This transformation has resulted in an increase in average farm size, a decrease in the number of farms and farmers, and focus on areas in which Ireland has comparative advantage because of our mild and wet climate.

Fortunately, there are many opportunities for Kenyan and Irish companies to work together. IPM Group is already working with Kephis and other stakeholders in Kenya to share seed technology and develop higher-yield Kenyan potato seed.


Lisa Doherty, StandardDigital, 17th of December 2018








This week’s chart comes from The Wall Street Journal and expresses that the average farm size in the United States is increasing. Larger farms often have more potential to investment into capital, technology and more productive farming equipment. As a result, in increase in general productivity is expected.










What do you call a cow with no calf? Decaffeinated.



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