After years of experimentation, Kenya has embarked on a project which should soon net the country one million pounds (about 2.4 million dollars) a year in export earnings.
GV Cinchona plantation
SV Estate manager inspecting young plants (3 shots)
CU damaged leaf
SV PAN from estate manager to workers thrashing branches to remove bark
CU AND SV thrashing continues (3 shots)
SV AND CU cinchona roots washed and sawn
SV bark removed from roots
SV Sack of bark put into crushing machine
SV bark inspected and put on conveyor belt
SV crushed bark put into sack
Initials GM/19.50 GM/20.12
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Background: After years of experimentation, Kenya has embarked on a project which should soon net the country one million pounds (about 2.4 million dollars) a year in export earnings. In Kericho, western Kenya, a plantation of Cinchona trees is now nearing maturity. The bark from the tree is sued to make quinine, the oldest and still the surest treatment for malaria.
Experimental plantings of chinchona started eight years ago but the first major plantings didn't start until 1968. Trees planted then will be ready for harvest in 1975 and all going well, will provide Kenya with its first export earnings from this source.
The crop has had its problems. The helopeltis insect attacked the first few trees planted, but after trying a number of repellents, the bug has been eradicated.
For the present the processing of the bark will be done abroad. It's hoped the crop will soon make enough money to pay for a factory in Kenya. The demand for quinine is increasing. It's been found that some strains of disease have become resistant to some modern drugs and quinine is still the most reliable.