Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua has asserted that the government is open to dialogue with cartels in the coffee, tea, and milk industries, but on one crucial condition.
Speaking during a meeting at his offices on Monday, Gachagua made it clear that such discussions would only occur if the cartels agreed to raise farmers' earnings.
The Deputy President reiterated that the cartels have persistently resisted government directives while attempting to maintain their dominance in the agricultural sector.
Gachagua emphasised that the government would not yield to any pressure exerted by multinational companies accused of monopolising the agricultural sector for their own profits, often at the expense of the farmers.
Gachagua revealed that the Kenya Kwanza administration was also willing to pay the political price to see through the reforms it wants to initiate.
"Good things do not come easy. These things are not for the faint-hearted. If we give in as a government, what will the farmers do? They will uproot the coffee. What will happen to the country regarding foreign exchange?" he asked.
"Let us not give in to pressure from the cartels. We do not have a problem with having a discussion with them if they up the price. All we want is money for the farmers."
Gachagua added that the government is planning to table various laws in Parliament to ensure farmers' interests are safeguarded.
However, Gachagua called on the farmers and Kenyans to be patient noting that the reforms the government is initiating will yield fruit in the coming months.
The DP made the remarks at a meeting attended by Head of Public Service Felix Koskei, Cooperatives Cabinet Secretary Simon Chelugui, and Principal Secretary for Cabinet Affairs at the Office of the Deputy President Julius Korir among other government officials.
Various multinational companies have been at loggerheads with the government, over reforms the government is initiating in the agricultural sector which has affected the sale of Kenyan coffee.
The situation escalated in June when the government revoked all licenses of multinational companies operating in the coffee sector.
Some of the companies had been accused of registering subsidiary companies to stop the government from implementing various reforms such as enforcing competitiveness in coffee milling and the marketing of the commodity.