WORLD FARMERS CENTRE

Feeding The World Through Knowledge Transfer To Farmers To Succeed In The Business Of Farming

WORLD FARMERS CENTRE

Feeding The World Through Knowledge Transfer To Farmers To Succeed In The Business Of Farming

AYOOLA FOODS: Feeding the nation with style. visit www.ayoolafoodsng.com, and call 0802 315 7938, 0909 392 9232 for more information

HUGE OPPORTUNITIES FOR MAIZE FARMERS

Maize Association of Nigeria (MAAN) and Maize Growers, Processors and Marketers Association of Nigeria (MAGPAMAN), have both received a total of N29 billion from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) under the Anchor Borrowers Programme (ABP) to boost the production over 20 million metric tonnes of maize for the wet season.

MAAN received N16 billion and MAGPAMAN received N13 billion to make a total of N29 billion. Dr. Abubakar Bello Funtua, the National President of MAAN, said over 200,000 farmers in the association targeted over 20 million tonnes. When the federal government, through the CBN, directed all dealers in foreign exchange to immediately stop processing Form M for maize importation further created more opportunities for maize farmers in the country.

The CBN believes that the maize importation ban policy will attract large-scale investment in maize production and create more market. Dr. Edwin Uche, the president of MAGPAMAN, stated that the association had received N13 billion for the wet season, and he can see a huge opportunity for maize production. “Maize is one of the commodities that can pull people out of poverty, it has a short life span, short gestation period, and you can do it two or three times a year. So what is a graduate doing when he can make a lot of money from it?”

 

Mr. Yusuf Yila, the Head of Development Finance at the CBN, who was represented by Mr. Elennor Ihua at the maize stakeholders meeting; “The CBN is passionate about maize as a commodity, and we believe that there is immense opportunity in that crop, and Nigeria has a comparative advantage to produce maize that will not only sustain the country but can be exported.

“We have a mandate to ensure there is no maize scarcity in this country and to grow maize production in this country. So, our target for the dry season is that we are going to double that number. “In the next 18 months from this dry season, our target is to do 2.5 million hectares of maize in this country. It means in the next 18 months our projection for production is 12.5 million metric tonnes of maize, and we believe with that and the other products around the country, Nigeria will be self-sustainable in maize production.”

 

Reported by OLADIMEJI OGUNTOYINBO,

🌳FARMING NEWS TODAY,

WORLD FARMERS CENTRE.

MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE: BUHARI LED ADMINISTRATION’S AGRIC POLICIES HAS SAVED NIGERIA FROM FOOD SCARCITY

The Minister of Agriculture, Alhaji Sabo Nanono, has stated that the Buhari led administration’s Agricultural Policies has saved Nigeria from food scarcity in the course of the COVID-19 crises. Alhaji Nanono made this statement on Thursday at the flag-off/Roll out of agricultural input distribution to farmers Nationwide in Calabar.

 

According to him “Prior to Buhari administration a lot of Nigerians were doubtful of the capacity of the country to feed itself, this notion fuelled the agitation for greater allocation of foreign exchange to finance food imports ranging from rice, dairy, sugar, oil, and host of others. “With COVID-19, the priority of every country in the world is to ensure limited disruption to its food supply chains. A number of countries have banned or drastically reduced food exports to avoid scarcity of food.

“With dwindling oil revenues and limited opportunity to import food, one would only wonder what Nigeria would have been experiencing today, in terms of food supply, if this Administration had not taken the right policy steps and remained focused and steadfast. “This gathering is one of our efforts to work hand-in-hand with state governments and other relevant stakeholders to assist in ensuring food security, economic growth and job creation, especially in the face of COVID-19 Pandemic.

 

“It is, therefore, my pleasure to roll out the distribution of agricultural inputs to smallholder farmers which include different categories of cocoa seedlings, improved oil palm sprouted nuts and cashew seeds as part of my Ministry’s interventions to reduce the effect of COVID-19 pandemic on agricultural production in Nigeria and avert food scarcity in 2021.

 

“As you are aware, the restriction of movement of people, goods, and services has negatively impacted on food supply chains, incomes, and livelihoods in the country. “Since smallholders are the most vulnerable, it becomes imperative for the government to support them with the much-needed inputs especially seeds, which is the most important factor that influences farmers’ yield in order to enable them to recover quickly from the set back of the Pandemic,” he said.

 

He further explained that complementary intervention efforts by the government will increase the resilience of farmers and the national food system. “Through this effort and other complementary interventions by different stakeholders, the government hopes to increase the resilience of farmers and the national food systems in general. “The Ministry and its research institutions are working towards making Nigeria self-sufficient in good quality seed and its availability to farmers as a foundation for attaining food and nutrition security as well as industrialization.

 

“Our efforts to improve rural infrastructure and other value-chains supports would invariably contribute to the attainment of Mr President’s desire to ensure easy access to quality food and nutrition by Nigerians.

“Today, the Ministry is supporting the oil-palm farmers, with 5,000 improved oil-palm sprouted nuts and 1,500kg improved cashew seed. The cocoa farmers will also be supported with 20,000 cocoa seedlings and agrochemicals. In addition, Rice farmers will be supported with 1,000 kg of rice seeds,” he added.

 

Reported by OLADIMEJI OGUNTOYINBO,

🌳FARMING NEWS TODAY,

WORLD FARMERS CENTRE.

NIRSAL Calls For Enrollment For The Agrogeocoop® Formation

The Nigeria Incentive-Based Risk Sharing System for Agricultural Lending (NIRSAL) has called on all youths, smallholder farmers, farmer leaders and aggregators to key into its Agro Geo-Cooperative model created for the purpose of sustainable farm/field structuring and governance, to enable sustainable access to finance, quality inputs and structured markets through NIRSAL’s facilitation.

 

NIRSAL which was launched in 2011 and incorporated in 2013 by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) as a dynamic, holistic USD500 Million public-private initiative to catalyse the flow of finance and investments into fixed agricultural value chains.

The exercise is aimed at creating 16,000 Agro Geo-Cooperatives ranging from 10 hectares to 20,001 hectares and above on 4 million hectares of farmland and enrolling about 8 million farmers across Nigeria who are expected to produce about 12 million metric tonnes of Grain Product Equivalent (GPE) annually over the medium to long term In line with this, Community Leaders, Individuals, Enterprises, Corporate Bodies, Graduates, N-POWER Beneficiaries, Active and Retired leaders and farmers in: The ADP programme, World Bank FADAMA Programme, USAID MARKETS Programme, IFAD Value Chain Development Programme, The World Bank Climate Adaptation and Business Support Programme, AfDB Agric Programmes, the DFID’s Propcom Maikarfi Programme, the SASSAKAWA Global 2000 Programme and others that meet NIRSAL PLC’s eligibility requirements and who are domiciled in or have access to their communities and farmers, are encouraged to take advantage of this opportunity as a means of employment and a source of income generation through supporting the productive activities of their self-organized Agro Geo-Cooperatives.

 

NIRSAL is, therefore, calling on all smallholder farmers, farmer leaders and aggregators, particularly for Dry Season and Non-Seasonal Commodities to take advantage of the NIRSAL AgroGeoCoop® formation exercise which is currently structuring smallholder farmers for access to finance, training, markets and more.

 

Reported by OLADIMEJI OGUNTOYINBO,

🌳FARMING NEWS TODAY,

WORLD FARMERS CENTRE.

70,000 FARMERS ENROLLED FOR THE ANCHOR BORROWERS PROGRAMME IN OGUN STATE

The Ministry of Agriculture Ogun State has revealed that it has registered over 70,000 farmers with the Anchor Borrowers Programme and over 40,000 smallholder farmers have also been enrolled with Anchor / agro-processors.

 

Dr. Adeola Odedina, the State Commissioner for Agriculture, made this known during the budget performance appraisal of Ministries, Departments and Agencies by members of the State House of Assembly’s Committee on Agriculture and Forestry led by Sylvester Abiodun at the state Assembly Complex, Oke-Mosan, Abeokuta. Dr Odedina said that the Ministry had pay out over N700m to 3,500 cassava farmers through the Central Bank of Nigeria in the first phase and had also linked 5,000 farmers to credit facility and land.

 

The Commissioner however mentioned some places in the four geopolitical zones of the state where agricultural programmes are taking place which include Asa, Ewekoro, Obafemi town, Moshood Abiola Polytechnic, Odeda farm Institute, Apojola, all in Ogun Central; Mamu, Awa, Oru, Ojowo, Ijebu-Igbo, Ikenne Diary farm, Alamure Atoba, Segan Village, Akaka Remo, Omu Gbawojo, in Ogun East, while the sites in the Ogun West include Imeko, Afon Farm Estate, Imeko (Idose) Ayetoro and Itoro.

 

He further explained that the Ministry had generated N50.2m into the of state government’s coffers within the period under review. Engr. Tunji Akinosi, the State Commissioner for Forestry, said the Ministry had successfully apprehended those carrying out illegal felling of trees and farming within the forest reserves especially Omo Forestry Reserve. He further explained that over 40 truckloads of illegal logs and 5,000 flinches had been confiscated and N2.5m had been gotten from fines during the period review.

 

Reported by OLADIMEJI OGUNTOYINBO,

🌳FARMING NEWS TODAY,

WORLD FARMERS CENTRE.

NAIC AND THREE OTHERS TO ADDRESS LOSS OF FOOD IN TRANSIT

The Federal Government has set up a tripartite committee in order to find a lasting solution to series of losses farmers incur during road crashes when transporting farm produce from across the country.

The committee, which is made up of the Nigerian Agricultural Insurance Corporation (NAIC), Nigeria Association of Agricultural Product Dealers (NAAPD) and Association of Local Governments of Nigeria (ALGON), is expected to work under a scheme, National Transit Insurance Scheme (NATIS). M

rs Folashade Joseph, the Managing Director of NAIC, who addressed journalists after signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the other parties involved, said all farmers and their products in the 774 local government areas across the federation would be insured against any loss before transporting them to various markets on road. “NASIT is the National Transit Insurance Scheme and it has to do with agricultural products that move on the road from one state to another. These products need to be insured. We all know why it needs to be insured,” she said.

 

She said losses of agricultural products on roads was threatening food sustainability, hence the reason for the urgent and practical step to set up the committee. Kingsley Chikezie, the Secretary, Board of Trustees of NAAPD, attributed most of the crashes to roadblocks mounted by security agents, appealed to President Muhammadu Buhari to prevail on them to reduce the roadblocks in other parts of the country, having removed 98 between Sokoto and Calabar.

 

Salau Nuhu Ozigi, the ALGON representative, advised farmers at the grassroots to approach their local governments for details on the insurance of their products before any loss.

 

Reported by OLADIMEJI OGUNTOYINBO,

🌳FARMING NEWS TODAY,

WORLD FARMERS CENTRE.

LAGOS FINALIZED THE ESTABLISHMENT OF A N10 BILLION AQUACULTURE CENTRE OF EXCELLENCE

The Lagos State has finalised arrangements on the establishment of a N10 billion Aquaculture Centre of Excellence (LACE) to promote local production and support the Federal Government’s plan of stopping fish importation by 2022.

Considering the latest report by the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) that global consumption of fish is set to rise. Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, represented by his deputy, Dr. Obafemi Hamzat, while speaking in Lagos during the distribution of agricultural inputs and productive assets to 2743 farmers under the 2020 agricultural value chains empowerment programme, explained that the project would be located on a 35-hectare land in Igbonla in Epe under a Public-Private partnership arrangement.

He said the project was designed to boost the growth and development of aquaculture industry in the state, with 2,000 tonnes of fish expected to be produced yearly, provision of input to fish farmers under the Lagos Nucleus Farms (LANS) scheme and also serve as off-taker for fish farm clusters.

 

According to the Governor, “The experience of the past few months during the lockdown occasioned by COVID-19 Pandemic has further reinforced the urgent need to expand the State’s food production base to meet such spontaneous increase in demand for food in the future. In line with this realisation and to ensure sustained food production and supply in the State, we are establishing the Lagos Food Production Centres in Badagry and Epe.

“The two centres will ensure the resuscitation, expansion, stocking of agricultural production facilities in various value chains and also develop Agro-Tourism centres in Lagos State Songhai project in Badagry and the Agricultural Training Institute, Araga, Epe,” he added.

 

Reported by OLADIMEJI OGUNTOYINBO,

🌳FARMING NEWS TODAY,

WORLD FARMERS CENTRE.

“PEOPLE SHOULD EMBRACE RABBIT PRODUCTION AND CONSUMPTION”—DR. POPOOLA

A livestock scientist at the Institute of Agricultural Research and Training (IAR&T), Ibadan, Dr Yemi Popoola, has advised Nigerians to embrace rabbit production business and consumption due to its numerous benefits. He gave the advice in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Ibadan, Oyo State.

Popoola stated that, unlike rabbits, other livestock animals like cow, goat and sheep take a longer time to mature, cost more to feed and also with the fact that they are slower to reproduce.

He said developing countries like Nigeria could benefit by switching to rabbit meat as a food source considering that we have a shortage of animal protein. “In many countries, this product costs roughly the same as chicken, which means that the price is not a barrier. “Rabbit meat is more than just a delicacy, the meat is white meat, which means it is healthier and it nourishes the body with nutritional values like proteins, iron and phosphorus.

“Its low-calorie content almost equates it to a balanced meal that meets the optimal health goals. “As compared to beef and pork, rabbit meat is relatively low on saturated fat as consuming high amounts of saturated fat subjects one to greater risks of coronary heart diseases due to its high cholesterol content,’’ he added.

 

According to him, rabbit meat is composed of the required proteins for the body that are important building blocks for essential muscle strength, and such strong muscles help the body generates more energy to build and maintain other tissue types.

Looking at the various benefits derived from rabbit meat, he said it is recommended for the young and old for brain development, as part of the reasons. It is also recommended for pregnant women, nursing mothers and athletes

 

Reported by OLADIMEJI OGUNTOYINBO,

🌳FARMING NEWS TODAY,

WORLD FARMERS CENTRE.

LASPOTECH STARTS A COMMERCIAL FISH FARM

In order to support the Lagos State Government Food Security Project and boost food production in the state, the management of the Lagos State Polytechnic (LASPOTECH), Ikorodu, has started a Pilot Project of Cage Culture for Large Scale Fish Farming at Agbowa-Ikosi Beach in Epe, where the polytechnic had secured about five acres of aquatic land. The project which will also serve as a training and research field for students and members of staff of the institution, among others.

 

Last week, the polytechnic, organised a sensitisation programme, entitled: “Optimising the Performance of Fisher Folks at Agbowa-Ikosi Fishing Community,” to kick-start the project, Fishermen and women in the community were taught modern fishing practices. Mr Olumide Metilelu the Acting Rector said, as part of the core mandates of community service and the establishment of the polytechnic to proffer solutions to the challenges faced by the society in different areas of development.

He added that the polytechnic would continue to work on opportunities that can improve the lives and well-being of the people, especially the people dwelling in the rural areas by teaching them modern fishing techniques that will boost their occupation and solve the various challenges faced the people in their fishing business.

 

The Rector encouraged the people in the fishing community to take advantage of the modern techniques and training that they are being taught by members of staff of the polytechnic, who are the facilitators, so as to boost their productivity and strengthen food security in the state.

The speakers at the programme include the Dean, School of Agriculture, Dr. Adebayo Ashafa and Head of Department of Fisheries Technology of the polytechnic, Dr. Olusola Babalola. The Director, Information & Public Relations for the institution, Lanre Kuye, assured members of the community of the management’s support in their areas of needs through sensitization programmes to boost their yields.

 

Reported by OLADIMEJI OGUNTOYINBO,

🌳FARMING NEWS TODAY,

WORLD FARMERS CENTRE.

LAGOS GOVERNMENT TO CREATE EXPORT OPPORTUNITIES FOR AGROPRENUERS THROUGH E-COMMERCE HUB SETUP

The Government of Lagos State is set to set up an e-commerce hub for agroprenuers in the state to produce farm produce under hygienic conditions suitable for export markets. Ms. Abisola Olusanya, the State Acting Commissioner for Agriculture, made this known during the inspection of venues of the Eko City Farmers Market, for Ileya, at St. Georges Primary School, Falomo, and Opebi Primary School, Opebi.

That the proposed hub would be located in a central location where all the certification of production would take place. She said that the ministry was trying to work with the Ministry of Science and Technology to develop an app-tech hub so as to encourage the youth to bring innovative solutions for agriculture. “We are trying to set up hubs or platforms where we will be able to get our producers to come together and be able to produce in sanitary and hygienic condition for export opportunities. We will get organisations like SON, NAFDAC to do a sort of assessment on the items produced for us to be able to export.

“Essentially, we want to be able to make it easier for our producers to be able to produce in a way that they do not have to go through many channels to certify their products. We want to make our certification take place in one location and then they can easily export,” the acting commissioner said.

Olusanya further said that the state government was working to create an enabling environment for agricultural businesses in the state. “When you talk about app-tech and e-commerce, I think we have a platform for that in the Eko City Farmers Market, which is supposed to connect the producers to the consumers and whosoever wants to buy along with any value chain that exists already.

“We know that there are several other platforms as well, like oja.ng and we have food.ng and a lot of platforms exist already to try to connect producers to the consumers.

“I believe we are doing that and you can come to the Ministry of Agriculture if you need any resources, if you need any help and support, we are willing and glad to do that.

“We have the agric-business department which actually has the mandate to be able to do farmer linkages to consumers, to farmers, to even the export community and to other stakeholders across the value chain. I believe that platform has been set up already,” she said.

She also said that “In August, we will be having our stakeholders’ engagement virtual, just to try to see what is ongoing with the terrain in the agric space and to be able to see whatever challenges they have and how we can mitigate all and be able to offer solutions to them.

I believe in app-tech space, yes a lot will be done, a lot still needs to be done. “We are also trying to connect to our sister Ministry, which is the Ministry of Science and Technology to develop an app-tech hub to encourage the youth to actually bring innovative solution in the agric space, so we believe we are doing that.

“Also, we have the Lagos State Entrepreneurship Programme (LAP), in Araga, we will be commencing with the next batch in August and part of their syllabus is the e-commerce section, just to try to encourage them that it is not just about the physical interaction between yourself and the consumer or whosoever is buying.

“It is to ensure that they can also set up e-commerce platforms, they can sell regardless of the time or the situation,” Olusanya added.

 

Reported by OLADIMEJI OGUNTOYINBO,

🌳FARMING NEWS TODAY,

WORLD FARMERS CENTRE.

THE GOVERNMENT OF OGUN STATE PARTNER IITA FOR AGRICULTURAL DEVELOPMENT

The Government of Ogun state had on Friday signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) as part of measures to boost and develop the agricultural sector in the state.

Dr Adeola Odedina, the Commissioner for Agriculture, said the partnership with IITA would strengthen agricultural intervention activities as well as expand mechanised agricultural opportunities. During the signing of the MoU at the institute’s Head Office in Ibadan, Odedina noted that the state was leveraging on the expertise of IITA so as to assist the state in its key strategic agriculture pillars of food security, job creation, industrialisation, nutrition and food safety among others.

He added that the state would also benefit in technical support for the establishment of demonstration farms for youths that would focus on agricultural projects as well as training. According to the commissioner, “In Ogun State, the focus on agriculture is real and we have close to 70,000 young people that have registered for opportunities in agriculture and the opportunity is along the value chain. Before we deliver on this responsibility as a state, we don’t want to rely on our strength alone, we also want to rely on partners. In the last two months, we have been working to develop an MoU so that IITA can support our programme in terms of technology, infrastructure and advice.

“Ogun state is running the biggest cassava programme in Nigeria, so some of our youths will be coming here to learn. We have over 27,000 registered cassava growers under its Anchor Borrowers Programme. We can’t do less than to attach our aprons to IITA in the cassava sector so that our youths can come out with high yield and farmers can sustainably supply raw materials to industries,” he said.

 

In a remark, the Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Agriculture, Dr Angel Adelaja-Kuye, said that the state was positioning itself to ensure it maintained its agricultural hub status, that the partnership was in line with the state government’s desire to make agriculture the mainstay of its economy and also make the sector technology-driven.

 

Mr Nteranya Sanginga, The Director-General of the IITA, who was represented by the Deputy Director-General, Partnership for Delivery, Mr Kenton Dashiell, said Ogun was on the right path of agricultural development. She applauded the state’s agriculture team for their effort in working to boosting the state’s economy through agriculture.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that other agricultural experts that were present during the signing of the MoU were the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture, Dr Dotun Sorunke. Others were the General Manager, Ogun State Agricultural Development Programme, Mr Taiwo Ayansanwo and the Coordinator, Cassava Revolution, Mrs Kehinde Jokotoye.

 

Reported by OLADIMEJI OGUNTOYINBO,

🌳FARMING NEWS TODAY,

WORLD FARMERS CENTRE.

GOVERNOR MAKINDE CHARGE SCHOOLS: TEACH AGRICULTURE AS A BUSINESS.

Mr Seyi Makinde, the Governor of Oyo state has addressed schools in the state on the importance identified of tweaking the curriculum of secondary schools to accommodate the teaching of agriculture as a business. T

he governor made this call at Fasola Grammar School, during the launching of the Start Them Early Programme (STEP) and the inauguration of STEP Agribusiness Facility in the school on Thursday. He noted that such teaching of agriculture as a business right from primary and secondary schools will enable people to, from young ages, possess practical entrepreneurial training and knowledge of modern agriculture practice.

In his statement, he noted that the teaching of agribusiness will change the typical mindset of young people of hard labour of tilling the soil with a hoe or weeding with a cutlass. He said that his government was open to any ideas that will change the mindset of the youth towards agriculture. According to Makinde, “In the 80s to early 90s, we had the Young Farmer’s Club in schools. There was also the School to Land Programme in Rivers State. These programmes helped to steer the interest of some youths towards agriculture, and I must say that some people who have grown to become farmers today developed their interest in agriculture because of those initiatives. So, it is time to borrow a leaf out of the 80s book and bring back this initiative. This pilot programme will expose young minds to careers in agriculture that they never knew existed, and they will be given the needed direction to pursue these careers.

 

"I am particularly thrilled because they will not only be learning agriculture in the classroom. Positive peer pressure, in the form of social clubs, will be used to reinforce their classroom training, and then, they will get practical entrepreneurial training in the business of agriculture. “The truth is, what we set before young people as goals, is what they will pursue. When our parents told us to be doctors, lawyers, engineers and architects, we followed that path. The school system also emphasised those professions.

"It is now time to diversify. It is time to start teaching our children, the business of agriculture" he added.

 

Makinde commended the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) for the STEP initiative, that the state government was ready to build such agribusiness facilities across the six geopolitical zones of the state. "I will provide a small budget within the 2020 budget of Oyo state for IITA and our Ministry of Education, as well as Oyo State Agribusiness Development Agency (OYSADA) to locate facilities like this within the other six geopolitical zones in the state.

"We have a Memorandum of Understanding with IITA to do the survey. We will finish the survey this year, and if we move really fast, we will be able to do one or two before this year runs out. I will take ownership of this project, the rest of the schools will come in under the 2021 budget. This project starting in Fasola Grammar School will be extended to other areas of Oyo state. Through this project, we will have a new generation of agro-entrepreneurs in Oyo State", Makinde added.

Giving a brief about the programme, the Coordinator, STEP, Mr Adedayo Adefioye, said that the programme was put in place to encourage and develop the interest of young people in agriculture and promote agriculture as a business in Oyo state.

He said modern farming technologies rather than subsistence practice of farming will encourage young people to embrace agriculture. The Coordinator, Technologies for African Agricultural Transformation Programme (TAAT), Dr Chrusantus Akem, while making a remark, charged the state government to utmost priority to the security of the Fasola facility, stating that the way to go in the world today, is for agribusiness to be incorporated in the school curriculum.

 

Reported by OLADIMEJI OGUNTOYINBO,

🌳FARMING NEWS TODAY,

WORLD FARMERS CENTRE.

UNILORIN TO EMBARK ON A N600M POULTRY PROJECT

The Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ilorin (UNILORIN), Prof. Sulyman Abdulkareem, has disclosed that the university, would be embarking on a poultry project worth N600 million. He made this known on Tuesday while inaugurating the Mycoplasma Diagnostic and Research Laboratory of the Department of Veterinary Microbiology, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine of the university.

Professor Mikhail Buhari the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research, Technology, and Innovation), who represented the Vice-Chancellor, noted that the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) came up with the idea after the FG banned the importation of poultry products into the country.

Abdulkareem narrated that the CBN invited some selected universities to Abuja for presentation and the University of Ilorin was among the selected universities and the first to submit its report which the CBN said would be used as the benchmark for others. He said that the CBN representative recently visited the University of Ilorin at Ganmo – Amoyo, and noted that the location was an ideal place to bring together all aspects of the university’s agro-business.

 

Abdulkareem said there would be a strong collaboration with the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine when the place was fully developed, as there was no way one could talk of agro-business without talking about veterinary medicine. In a remark, Dr. Isaac Olorunshola of the Department of Veterinary Microbiology, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, commended the Vice-Chancellor for his active role in making the project a success.

Olorunshola said that the laboratory was put in place in collaboration with the University of Edinburgh, Scotland, that the purpose of the laboratory was for research, training of students, and for collaborative work within and outside the faculty.

He said it was especially for colleagues in Medicine to investigate Atypical Pneumonia (non-conventional Pneumonia) in children under the age of five years, that mycoplasma organism cut across human and animal growth which needed to be studied.

 

Olorunshola further explained that mycoplasma organism was responsible for Atypical Pneumonia in children that could lead to neonatal death and also infertility in women and men of the reproductive stage. That the organism could cause chronic respiratory diseases that could lead to mortality of 50 to 60 percent in an animal like a chicken.

 

Reported by OLADIMEJI OGUNTOYINBO,

🌳FARMING NEWS TODAY,

WORLD FARMERS CENTRE.

CBN SUPPORTS MAIZE GROWERS TO PRODUCE 12.5MILLION METRIC TONS OF MAIZE IN 18 MONTHS

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has on Friday in Abuja stated that it would intensify its support to maize farmers so that they can meet the target of producing 12.5 million metric tons of maize in the next 18 months. The Head, Development Finance Department, CBN, Mr Yusuf Yila, made this known at the stakeholders’ meeting of Maize Growers Processors and Marketers Association of Nigeria (MAGPAMAN).

The meeting which was focused on strategies for effective implementation of 2020 wet season CBN-MAIZE Anchor Borrowers Programme. According to him, “CBN is passionate about maize as a commodity and we believe that there is immense opportunity in that crop and Nigeria has a comparative advantage to produce maize that will not only sustain the country but can be exported. It is on that premise that the CBN resolved and decided to pursue the support of the maize initiatives.

“Just this 2020 wet season farming, our total pursuit and target that we have met is 250, 000 hectares across the country and MAGPAMAN coming for the first time has taken about 70 000. We have a mandate to ensure there is no maize scarcity in this country and to grow maize production in this country.

"So, our target for the dry season is that we are going to double that number. “In the next 18 months from this dry season, our target is to do 2.5 million hectares of land of maize in this country. It means in the next 18 months, our projection for production is 12.5 million metric tons of maize and we believe with that and the other production activities around the country Nigeria will be self-sustainable in maize production,’’ Yila said.

The Senior Commercial Officer, Commodities and Export Department, Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment, Mr Inuwa Ibrahim, the moved was very commendable, especially at a time the country was diversifying its economy. Ibrahim, charged the maize farmers to leverage on the CBN ABP support to prove they could produce to meet local demand.

 

The National President of MAGPAMAN, Dr Edwin Uche, said that the association had received N13 billion support from CBN for the 2020 wet season farming. “MAGPAMAN has received N13 billion for the wet season maize anchor borrower programme for 70, 000 farmers. It is a programme that provides farmers access to finance, technology and mechanisation and virtually to all key component of the value chain,’’ he said.

 

He commended the Federal Government for its agricultural policies, “Our farmers have gotten their inputs and they have also received their cash components. They are farming and activities are going on and we are working to address gaps where necessary. “Maize is one of the commodities that can pull people out of poverty, it has a short life span, short gestation period and you can do it two or three times a year, so what is an unemployed graduate doing when he can make a lot of money from it,’’ he added.

 

Reported by OLADIMEJI OGUNTOYINBO,

🌳FARMING NEWS TODAY,

WORLD FARMERS CENTRE.

COCOA FARMERS SEEK FG’S INTERVENTION OVER PEST INVASION

Cocoa and Plantain Farmers Associations of Nigeria has appealed to the Federal Government to come to their aids over the invasion of pests on their farms. The state Chairman of the association, Mr. Oluronikise Ibidapo made this appeal during the inauguration of the Ondo State chapter of the association, in Akure.

 

According to him, cocoa beans and plantains were destroyed by the pests and this has badly affected the expected harvests of the farmers. The magnitude of destruction of our crops by the pests was even more terrible during the period of the COVID-19 lockdown as farmers could not work on their plantations. Ibidapo, appealed directly to the President, Muhammadu Buhari to please come to their aid in the provision of chemicals, farm implements, seedlings as well as funds to cushion the effects of the pests invasion.

 

He also solicited financial intervention farmers in the South and some Northern states that didn’t benefit from the N13 billion, that was recently released to control pests invasion on their farms. He appreciated the Ondo State Governor, Rotimi Akeredolu for his support to farmers. However, he called on the governor to help fix the roads leading to their farms, as this had been resulting in wasted harvests and revenue annually.

Reported by OLADIMEJI OGUNTOYINBO,

🌳FARMING NEWS TODAY,

WORLD FARMERS CENTRE.

YOUTH IN AGRIBUSINESSES TO GET CBN’S INTEREST FREE LOANS

Youth in agribusinesses to get an interest free loan. This was revealed by the Central Bank of Nigeria CBN on Tuesday when it unveiled new policy guidelines for Non-Interest Financial Institutions (NIFIs) under its Agri-Business, Small and Medium Enterprise Investment Scheme (AGSMEIS) and Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Development Fund (MSMEDF). Amongst the guidelines included the Accelerated Agricultural Development Scheme (AADS) which is said to be targeted at youth in agribusinesses.

 

According to the CBN: “The non-interest guidelines for the AADS are aimed at engaging a minimum of 370,000 youths in agricultural production across the country between now and 2023, in order to reduce unemployment among the youth in the country.

“While the specific objectives of the MSMEDF for NIFIs are to increase the productivity and output of microenterprises, job creation and engender inclusive growth, those of the AADS are to increase agricultural production towards food security, job creation and economic diversification, CBN said.

 

“The non-interest guidelines for the AADS, which is targeted at Nigerian youth between 18 and 35 years, seek to promote interaction among state governments, the CBN and other stakeholders in the agricultural value chain in each state. “To enhance job creation in the agricultural sector, with focus on two crops where states have a comparative advantage.”

 

This is believed to help Nigeria engage the teeming unemployed youths in the country.

 

Reported by OLADIMEJI OGUNTOYINBO,

🌳FARMING NEWS TODAY,

WORLD FARMERS CENTRE.

MAIZE FARMERS APPEALED TO FG TO END ATTACKS ON FARMERS TO FORESTALL FOOD CRISES

The National President Maize Association of Nigeria (MAAN), Dr Bello Abubakar, has appealed to the Federal Government to find a lasting solution to the continuous issue of bandits and herdsmen attacks on farmers so that they can to carry out their farming business.

This appeal was made in Abuja during the inauguration of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) chapter of the association and the CBN’s Anchor Borrowers program input distribution for the wet season.

Dr Abubakar said the attack on farmers need to end in order for Nigeria to make up for the possible food deficit that could be caused by the COVID-19, “We want to kindly plead with the Federal Government through the CBN to increase security presence in the country to safeguard farmers so that the impact of the pandemic on food production will be drastically reduced”.

He also appealed to the CBN to review the tenure of loans from a year to two years and also review the stringent personal guarantor requirement, “We seek your assistance to kindly look into the tenure of the loan for it to be extended to two years, the issue of personal guarantee for members should be reviewed and a better alternative be sorted out by the Presidential Fertiliser Initiative (PFI).’’

He urged the benefiting farmers to utilize the opportunities being given to them through the anchor borrowers' loans and inputs to ensure they were able to repay the loan. Dr. Abubakar also urged farmers to strive to repay the loans promptly as their ability to repay will sustain the program for the future.

 

Reported by OLADIMEJI OGUNTOYINBO,

🌳FARMING NEWS TODAY,

WORLD FARMERS CENTRE.

IAR&T PRIORITIZES RESEARCH ON INCREASING SEED LONGEVITY

The Institute of Agricultural Research and Training (IAR&T), Ibadan, said that to increase seed longevity for maize, kenaf and grain legumes, proper crop breeding, right agronomic management and good conditioning of storage facilities are essential. To achieve this goal it had to prioritise research on these crops to enhance food security.

 

The Executive Director of IAR&T, Prof. Veronica Obatolu, who is a professor of food nutrition made this known to News Agency of Nigeria in Ibadan on Monday. She said that in achieving food security, seeds are the most essential living inputs when it comes to crop production. She said that the cost of producing quality seeds for farmers to plant yearly would be higher than what it would cost to store the same quantity of seeds under suitable conditions for future use.

 

In her statement “Good storage also ensures the purity of seeds than the frequent production in the field. Hence, a lot of work in the institute is being channelled into improving the storability of seeds. “The main benefit of our research on improved shelf life of crops to farmers is improved income and livelihood; this is because the farmers have access to adequate and quality seeds to plant at the right time.

 

“Planting high-quality seeds results in good crop establishment, vigorous plants and ultimately higher yield at harvest. Another important benefit of improved seeds to farmers is the high value of produce and products derived from the use of high quality seeds, the products command higher prices.”

 

Furthermore, she said availability of quality and nutritious food to the populace at affordable prices contributes largely to food security and assurance of peace in a nation. “The institute has made a giant stride in research breakthroughs most especially, the provision of additional technical support to farmers in terms of preservation of renewable resources through seeds and value addition has grossly improved their livelihood. Many of our technologies in terms of value addition to food products, food preservation, low cost agronomic practices, and improvement of varieties and seed availability have been adopted by farmers all over the nation.”

 

She advised farmers that the most important way they could increase their yield per hectare is by following the recommended guidelines for the production of each crop, planting improved varieties and adopt the use of quality seeds. And other cultural practices such as plant population density, crop protection against weeds, pests, diseases and other natural enemies, timely harvesting and proper techniques of post-harvest handling must be done at the right time and appropriately.

 

Reported by OLADIMEJI OGUNTOYINBO,

🌳FARMING NEWS TODAY,

WORLD FARMERS CENTRE.

FEED INDUSTRY TO FACE MORE CHALLENGES AHEAD

The Nigeria feed industry may face a serious shortfall in Soybeans production this year. The Soya beans farmers’ association is projecting that output may decrease by 50 per cent.

The National President of the soybeans farmers association, Dr Nafiu Abdul said, the association had earlier projected to produce one million bags of100kg per bag this season but unfortunately, most farmers could not get the CBN Anchor Borrowers’ loan because of COVID-19.

 

This has reduced the population of farmers to cultivate soybeans and is going to affect production by almost 50%. He further said that This Is really going to affect the poultry feed industry, that depends on the crop as one of the main ingredients in feed production. Poultry farmers are already complaining of the scarcity of maize for feed production across the country.

 

Maize farmers are already forecasting a downward trend too due to pandemic. Maize and soybeans are the major ingredients of the poultry feeds. Soybeans is always been planted late in the season beginning from the second week of June and even at the beginning of August in some places.

 

Dr Nafiu said the farmers have been worried about so many things that are happening now in the country because of the COVID -19 as the cost of inputs is going very high. Fertiliser is now been sold in some locations for more than N10, 000, which is double the price it was sold last year.

 

Reported by OLADIMEJI OGUNTOYINBO,

🌳FARMING NEWS TODAY,

WORLD FARMERS CENTRE.

NATIONAL BIOTECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENT AGENCY SET TO PRODUCE 5 MILLION YAM SEEDLINGS

The Acting Director-General of the National Biotechnology Development Agency (NABDA) Professor Alex Akpa has said that the agency is set to produce 5 million yam seedlings for Nigerian farmers this year.

 

Professor Akpa made this known during a Webinar conference on ‘Curbing COVID-19 Pandemic in Nigeria: Analysing the role of Plant Genetic Modification in boosting immunity against infectious diseases’. He stated that the agency was able to produce 1 million yam seedlings last year that were distributed to farmers for cultivation.

 

According to his statement “Biotechnology has other applications, in agriculture, it is massive and that is where most post-COVID-19 is coming, you find out that here in NABDA, using Biotechnology we have started impacting massively in the area of agriculture. For instance, in our yam multiplication program, last year, we were able to produce 1 million yam seedlings, and this year, we are targeting 5 million yam seedlings, all these things are feasible because of Biotechnology”.

 

He spoke on the importance of biotechnology application for the benefits of man especially in the areas agriculture, health and environment. In his words “The COVID-19 pandemic has created a massive problem in the world and here in Nigeria. We all know that at this time, Biotechnology is a tool that is extremely important and useful not only to Nigeria but to the whole world.

“If you look at it in the area of health, there is no way you can do vaccines, there is no way you can do diagnostic kits without Biotechnology. In NABDA, we have been able to succeed with our technical partners to develop an RNA based test kits which are the first of its kind in the world, it is purely African project.

 

“You will find also that apart from diagnostic kits, we have been involved in vaccines which more than 100 countries are working on for COVID19 including Nigeria. We will soon start to unveil our efforts to Nigerians and to the world”, he added.

 

Reported by OLADIMEJI OGUNTOYINBO,

🌳FARMING NEWS TODAY,

WORLD FARMERS CENTRE.

OGUN ASSEMBLY- ANIMAL GRAZING BILL PASSES SECOND READING

The problem of farmers/herder clashes has been a serious case across the country. In order to find a lasting solution to the problem, a bill on Animal Grazing and Cattle Ranch Establishment Law of Ogun State 2020 was sponsored by Hon Ganiyu Oyediji of the Ogun State House of Assembly.

The bill on Animal Grazing and Cattle Ranch Establishment Law of Ogun State, 2020 has passed second reading on the floor of the House, with the assurance that when it is implemented, it will curb the destruction of farmlands and stop the various attacks killings between farmers and herders which has been a result of the open grazing.

 

the motion was moved by the Minority Leader and sponsor, Ganiyu Oyedeji, seconded by Hon. Yusuf Adejojo and supported by the Whole House through a voice vote, during a plenary presided over by Speaker Olakunle Oluomo, at the Assembly Complex in Oke-Mosan, Abeokuta.

 

The sponsor explained that the bill is of essence to promote peaceful co-existence. He also said that the bill was proposed to ensure peaceful atmosphere for existing and prospective herders to set up ranches for their cattle.

 

He added that the full implementation would boost agricultural practices, particularly animal husbandry in the State. support of the bill, Honourables Adejojo, Adeyanju Adegoke, Sola Adams, and Amosun Yusuf, added that when the bill is passed and signed into law by Governor Abiodun, it would stop environmental pollution, reduces farmers-herders clashes and increase food production.

 

Other members also said that the bill would make the State to embrace the ranching system, which is in accordance with best practices around the world.

 

Reported by OLADIMEJI OGUNTOYINBO,

🌳FARMING NEWS TODAY,

WORLD FARMERS CENTRE.