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Kenya's grain reserves crucial to food security

Kenya plans to increase grain reserves from 3.1 million bags to 8 million 198-pound bags, according to a new report from Bloomberg.

"The Ministry of Agriculture has rolled out an ambitious irrigation program to enhance food security," said the Kenyan government in an official statement.

The aim is to reach the new target by December 2011, said Prime Minister Raila Odinga from Nairobi.

About 40,000 acres are planned to be irrigated and 1 million acres will be irrigated by 2016, according to the government.

Kenya has been beset by a drought affecting more than 1.86 million people and 20 million livestock.

In terms of Kenya's labor force, which consists of about 17.94 million people, approximately 75 percent are employed in agriculture, with the remaining in industry and services, according to the CIA Factbook.

There is an unemployment rate of 40 percent as of 2008 in the country and a population below poverty line of 50 percent, as of 2000.

Kenya exports commodities ranging from tea and coffee to fish and petroleum. 
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