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Showing posts from June, 2016

Association introduces contract farming to develop nation`s agricultural sector

The Federation of Agricultural Commodity Association of Nigeria (FACAN) said on Thursday that it had introduced contract farming among its members as part of efforts to develop the nation`s agricultural sector. The contract farming specialist with FACAN, Mr Isaac Ojonugwa, disclosed this in Abuja in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN). ``FACAN has taken it upon itself to organise all the agricultural commodity producers to venture into contract farming. ``Contract farming is a production and marketing agreement between farmers and the off-takers. ``This is what is going to sustain all the commodities and make them independent of government’s assistance all the time, `` Ojonugwa said. He explained that contract farming would also link agro-commodity producers with financial institutions and insurance companies, and enable farmers to know their obligations. ``Under this arrangement, farmers would be able to know their obligations as to the quality of what they are produc…

Farmers want power tiller machine to boost rice production in Ebonyi

Farmers in Ikwo Local Government Area of Ebonyi have called on the Federal Government and FADAMA to provide power tiller machine to help boost rice production in the state. Mr Ukpai Patrick, the Local Government Chairman, made the appeal when FADAMA team paid them a visit on Wednesday in Ndiagu Echara. Patrick stated that rice farmers in his locality have many challenges among which were power tiller for clearing farmland to increase rice production. "Farmers are still using the manual way of land clearing and planting, which is too stressful and delaying the farming processes. We need this modern technology. "Power tiller is a versatile machine primarily used for the preparation of land for farming operations. The machine can be used for tilling, ploughing, weeding, pumping, leveling, ridging and so on. "One of the advantages of this machine is that, it can be operated hands free with a remote. Farmers can operate it at their comfort of not stepping into the field at …

Tambuwal parleys CBN, farmers over anchor borrower scheme

Gov. Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto recently held a special meeting with officials of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), banks, farmers’ associations and other stakeholders toward boosting rice production in the state. Tambuwal said that the state government had made concrete arrangements to boost rice production by providing 50,000 bags of high yield rice seeds to be distributed to farmers across the state free of charge. He said that the state government is commitment to ensure the smooth take off of the Federal Government’s Anchor Borrowers’ Scheme in Sokoto. He explained that already the state government has procured 5,000 pumping machines at the cost of N30, 000 each to be sold to anchor farmers at the cost of N10, 000 each. Tambuwal noted the major problem of the farmers was low level of awareness and urged the participating entities to increase awareness among farmers on the benefits of the programme. The governor urged the officials of the anchor scheme to do their best to ensure …

Food security: Ogun Govt. pledges continued participation in agric. intervention programmes

The Ogun Government says it will continue to participate actively in all national and international agricultural intervention programmes to ensure food security in the state.
The State Commissioner for Agriculture, Mrs Ronke Sokefun, said this recently while inspecting the 185 hectares of rice and cassava intervention sites in the Yewa Local Government Area of the state.
The commissioner was accompanied by a team from the International Fund for Agriculture Development (IFAD) Assisted Value Development Programme.
The tour took the team to Otete, Joga- Orile and Eggua, all in Yewa Council Area of Ogun.
Sokefun said that in order to achieve food sufficiency in the state, the state government had continued to train farmers on agronomy and land preparation.
She said that the government had brokered meetings between farmers and the private sector as major players in rice and cassava production.
She commended the Federal Government and IFAD for its value-chain intervention programme in cassava and…

10% cassava flour inclusion in bread to industrialise crop-USAID manager

Mr Peter Akinyemi, the Cassava Value Chain Manager, United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Market II Project, has said that the 10 per cent cassava flour inclusion in bread, would industrialise the crop. Akinyemi told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos on Thursday that the government policy was partly meant to reduce post-harvest losses, since Nigeria was the world highest producer of cassava. According to him, the Federal Government has succeeded in creating a high demand for the crop but expressed fears that the policy had not been backed up by incentives. ``It was a laudable policy that should transform cassava from a mere farm crop to an industrial crop because 80 per cent of farmers in sub-Sahara Africa grow cassava. ``Cassava can be used to transform the lives of rural farmers because once there is demand for what they produce and it is profitable for them, they will do it. ``The idea is a booster for farmers to sell their cassava and to reduce import…

KDSG trains 700 farmers in soybeans cultivation

The Kaduna State Government on Thursday said it had trained 700 farmers on new methods that would boost soybeans
cultivation in the state. Malam Dahiru Abdullahi, the Public Relations Officer (PRO), Kaduna Agricultural Development Programme (KADP), disclosed this in an interview with the
News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Kaduna. Abdullahi said that the one-day intensive training was part of requirements to access the N2 billion Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) farmers' loan in the state. He noted that the training was also aimed at reducing farmers risk and improve soybeans yield. The official added that the new method would boost the quality of the crop in order to make it more competitive in the world market. He explained that the farmers, including women cooperative groups, were trained on farming methods that would boost their yield. According to him, the training include seed selection, site selection and fertilizer application, as well as disease control. Abdullahi said that the …

Nigeria, Norway to deepen cooperation on fisheries development - President Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday in Abuja said Nigeria and Norway would work together to deepen their agricultural cooperation, particularly on fish farming and fisheries development. The president was speaking in Abuja at a farewell audience with the outgoing Ambassador of Norway to Nigeria, Amb. Rolf Ree. Buhari said his administration would continue to promote agriculture as an alternative revenue earner for the country. He welcomed the humanitarian aid provided by Norway, a major fish exporting country, and some European Union member countries in support of Internally Displaced Persons in the country. He reaffirmed the Federal Government’s commitment to explore opportunities to ensure the rehabilitation and safe return of affected persons to their communities. The President, who also received the outgoing Ambassador of Mexico, Mr Anthonio Garcia Blanco, commended the cordial relations between both countries in the 40 years of their diplomatic relations. The President congr…

Access to farm inputs in Kogi still very poor, says Expert

Mr Tunde Ikuenayo, the state Coordinator of Youth for Agriculture (YFA), on Friday said that access to farm inputs by rural farmers in Kogi was very poor and discouraging. Ikuenayo, who disclosed this in Lokoja, said  that farmers across the state were finding it very difficult to access farm inputs like fertiliser, seeds, herbicides, pesticides and equipment like tractors and harvesters. He added that rural farmers were also facing the challenges of access to funds, delay in accessing the funds, lack of storage facilities and good access roads to transport their farm produce to the markets. "Since Local Government Councils are not involved in loan disbursement, let them have warehouses where farm inputs are easily and readily accessible by rural farmers at subsidised rates. "This should be properly channeled and adequately monitored by government and all stakeholders to avoid irregularities and sharp practices, “he said. Ikuenayo stressed the need for farmers in the state…

Adamawa Govt Gazettes 30 grazing reserves, registers 1.5 million cattle - Commissioner

The Adamawa Government on Sunday said it has gazetted 30 grazing reserves and registered more than 1.5 million herds of cattle in the state.
Dr Isa Salihu, the state Commissioner for Livestock Development, made this known in an interview with News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Yola.
Salihu said that the development was in line with the Federal Government effort to establish grazing reserves in the interested states.
``We have 72 grazing reserves in the state, out of which 30 are already gazetted.
``5,000 hectares of land was allocated to the Federal Government for the establishment of national grazing reserves.
``And the state government is willing to allocate more additional lands for the programme,” Salihu said.
NAN recalls that the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Mr Audu Ogbeh, recently visited the state where he interacted with various livestock stakeholders to address the problem of farmers/herdsmen clashes.
The commissioner explained that the establishment of grazing reser…

“Feed Africa” – AfDB develops strategy for Africa’s agricultural transformation

The Board of Directors of the African Development Bank Group (AfDB) has approved an agricultural transformation strategy for a competitive and inclusive agribusiness sector that creates wealth, improves lives and secures the environment.
“Feed Africa: Strategy for Agricultural Transformation in Africa, 2016-2025,” received unanimous endorsement by Executive Directors of the Bank Group in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, on Wednesday, May 22, 2016. The document was widely reviewed by global stakeholders, peer institutions and partners as well as through regional consultations held in Rabat, Kinshasa, Lusaka, Dar es Salaam and Accra.
Focusing on transformation, scaling up agriculture as a business through value addition, led by the private sector and enabled by the public sector, and using innovative financing mechanisms, the strategy aims to end hunger and rural poverty in Africa in the next decade.
It is the second of the Bank’s High 5 priorities – Light up and power Africa, Feed Africa, Indu…

Institute trains farmers on pest control

The Institute of Agricultural Research and Training, Ibadan, on Sunday said it had trained farmers on control of armyworm which recently invaded maize farms in the South West. Dr Oluwakemi Odeyemi, Entomologist at the institute, who disclosed this in Ibadan,  said the pest, called Spodoptera Frugiperda, was the first of its kind in West Africa. She said the insect, which ravaged maize fields at an alarming rate, also affected farms in other parts of the country. She said the pest, which attack crops during evening hours, caused leaf tattering and damaged maize tassels and cobs. ``This lead to high cost of production, yield reduction and sometimes total crop loss,” she said. The entomologist advised farmers to maintain good field hygiene, regular monitoring, burning of crop residues as well as to allow ploughed fields for at least a week to expose the insects to heat and birds. ``Farmers should also plant resistant material; adopt biological controls such as the use of non-pathogenic …

Cameroun’s Agro–Hub wins Nestle Creating Shared Value Prize 2016

Nestle Central and West Africa Region (CWAR) on Tuesday announced Agro-Hub from Cameroun as the winner of its 2016 Creating Shared Value (CSV) Prize. A Nestle CWAR statement said that Paul Bulcke, Nestle’s CEO, presented the CHF 300,000 prize to Agro-Hub at the Creating Shared Value Global Forum 2016 in Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire. Agro-Hub merited the prize based on its contributions toward enhancing the livelihood of Africans in Cameroun and beyond. The statement quoted Kais Marzouki, Market Head for Nestle CWAR as saying: ``Agro-Hub has successfully linked smallholder cassava farmers to markets, providing them with opportunities to generate significant and sustainable income. ``We are proud that the winner of this year’s prize is from our region and will continue to enhance the livelihood of Africans in Cameroun and beyond,’’ it quoted Marzouki as saying. Agro-Hub, an agricultural production and marketing agency based in the South-West of Cameroun, is working to help small-scale farme…

FG okay Union Dicon's takeover of Kogi SCPZ

The Alape Staple Crops Processing Zone (SCPZ) in Kogi State, which suffered setback last January due to a sudden pull out by an agro-allied American Company,Cargill, has now received a new lease of life as an indigenous company is set to take over in the next couple of weeks. This was disclosed weekend by Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Chief Audu Ogbeh, in Abuja when he received the management team of the new company, DICON SALT. The SCPZ idea focuses on attracting private sector agribusinesses to set up processing plants in zones of high food production, to process commodities into food products. The government was expected to put in place appropriate fiscal, investment and infrastructure policies for Staple Crops Processing Zones. Audu Ogbeh said the idea was a great innovation of the last administration, “and, like we have said, we are not going to engage in policy somersault. So, we are carrying on with the great idea and we are adding even greater idea…

Don calls for re-establishment of Marketing Board

Dr Awotein George, a don, has advised the Federal Government to re-establish agricultural produce Marketing Board in the country. George, the Head of Department of Fisheries and Aquatic Environment, Rivers University of Science and Technology (RSUST), Port Harcourt, gave the advice
in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Port Harcourt on Tuesday. He said that the board would be beneficial to farmers as prices of farm produce were stable in the 1960’s when the board was operational. He recalled that the Board was saddled with the responsibility of buying up agricultural produce from farmers and sale in local and international markets. He added that the board fixed prices and grades of farm produce, bought and paid farmers according to the grades of their produce. George explained that the operations of the Board did not only stabilise the prices of farm produce but put paid to market glut, especially perishable items. The university lecturer said that the country’s eco…

Farmers urge FG to patronise indigenous Agro Dealers

Mr Godwin Akandu, President, Etche Farmers Association, on Tuesday urged the Federal Government to enhance participation of Indigenous Agro Dealers in the forthcoming launching of agro products distribution.
Akandu made the call in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Port Harcourt.
He said that Rivers indigenous suppliers, who participated in the 2014 wet season agro products distribution, were still being owed by the Federal Government.
According to him, non payment of indigenous fertiliser suppliers in the state would hinder their participation as the Federal Government announces plans to launch 2016 edition of the programme soon.
He, however, commended the Federal Government for its decision to pay-off debts owed agro dealers and called for a review of the payment process to accommodate Rivers suppliers.
Akandu said that 12 Agro products suppliers participated in the 2014 wet season distribution in Rivers, of which four were indigenes of the state.
"We were 12 Ag…

Farmers urge Jigawa govt. to hasten fertilizer distribution

Some farmers in Hadejia, Jigawa, have called on the state government to commence distribution of fertilisers on time to boost food production. They also called for the review of Growth Enhancement Support (GES) programme, to enhance access to fertilisers and inputs. A cross section of farmers made the call on Tuesday in Hadejia in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN). One of the farmers, Malam Usman Gambo, stressed the need for the government to provide fertilisers and inputs on time to enable farmers cultivate their farmlands on good time. Another farmer, Bashir Danladi, urged the government to assist farmers with drought resistant and early maturing seeds to guard against losses. He explained that early distribution of fertilisers was also necessary to guard against the warning of dry spell predicted by the Nigeria Metro logical Agency (NIMET). ``The government should heed the warning by NIMET and distribute fertilizers and seeds to farmers at the beginning of the cr…

Niger Govt. launches sale of grains at subsidised rate

The Niger Government on Tuesday inaugurated the sale of subsidised grains to residents of its 25 local government areas. Gov. Sani Bello of Niger, who performed the inauguration in Minna, said that the grains – rice, millet and maize -- would only be sold in measurements in order to allow more people to access it and touch the lives of people at the grassroots. Bello, who was represented by his Deputy, Alhaji Ahmed Ketso, said ``we feel the pains of our people and that is why we make it a priority to embark on the sale of 1,508 tonnes of these essential food items. ``Government has invested heavily on this project and we intend to make it a continuous exercise until the economic situation improves.’’ He, however, urged traders to review the hike in prices of other commodities to complement government’s efforts at reviving agriculture and ensuring food security. The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the N200 million subsidised grains are the staples among the people of Niger. …

AfDB plans $175m for agricultural transformation in North-West region

The Country Director, African Development Bank (AfDB), Dr Ousmane Dore, has earmarked 175 million dollars for Agricultural Transformation Agenda Support Programme (ATASP-I) as instrument for consolidating the bank’s investments in Nigerian agricultural sector.
The latest edition of the bank’s newsletter, issued by its Nigerian Country Office on Tuesday in Abuja quoted Dore as saying this at a meeting held in Kaduna Government House recently.
He said that in recognition of its ongoing effort to transform agriculture from subsistence to agribusiness, AfDB was invited by the leadership of Nigeria’s North-West region to review the agricultural development strategy for the region.
Dore added that another aim of the invitation was for the bank to give an overview of its ongoing and upcoming interventions in agriculture in Nigeria as they relate to the seven North-West states.
``In line with the agenda of the meeting, we (bank) have outlined the AgriculturalTransformation Agenda Support Progra…

NCAM urges cottage industries to commercialise agric research outcome

The National Centre for Agricultural Mechanisation (NCAM) has urged cottage industries to commercialise results from agricultural research centres to boost productivity and standardise agricultural practices in the country.

Rainfall: FCT farmers predict bountiful harvest

Some farmers in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) said there would be a bountiful harvest in 2016 farming season, following the current adequate rainfall in the territory. The farmers, who spoke in separate interviews with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), on Tuesday said that the two days rainfall in the territory was an indication of good harvest especially yams. Mr Zaka Habila, a farmer from Gaube village in Kuje FCT, said with adequate rainfall, some yam species will grow up to two feet size. ``We thank God for this two days rain because it will make the crops in our farms to grow properly, especially root crops. ``Yam species like `akuci, army and gwagwa' can grow up to two feet size if they get adequate rainfall because it makes the soil soft for yam roots to penetrate downward. ``Adequate rainfall will also assist the proper growth of maize, millet and groundnut on farms as it nourishes the crop leaves to grow well,'' habila said. Mr Isuwa Gaza, a farmer from Tukp…

Fadama III AF disburses N20.55m to Ebonyi to improve rice production

Dr Cletus Nwakpu, the Ebonyi Coordinator, Fadama III Additional Financing (AF), on Monday said the project had disbursed N20.55 million to the state to improve rice production. Nwakpu said this in Abakaliki in an interview with the News

World Bank to assist in boosting rice production in Ebonyi

The World Bank says it will expand its agricultural operations in Ebonyi, especially in the cultivation, processing and marketing of rice. Dr Adetunji Oredikpe, Leader of the World Bank/Federal Government Support Mission of FADAMA Group, made the assertion on Monday in Abakaliki during a co

NO GENETICALLY MODIFIED ORGANISMS OFFICIALLY GROWN IN NIGERIA - FG

By AlhajiIsiaka Yusuf The Minister of Environment,Amina Mohammed has called on Nigerians not to panic over the issue of Genetically

Food security under threat in Tanzania- Devt Partners

...25, 000 households sacked
ABUJA- Development partners in the agricultural sector have raised alarm over food crisis following massive floods in Tanzania, which threatens food security as over 25,000 households have been sacked. This was discovered when 13 representatives of international development partners visited the flood ravaged region Dodoma for on the spot assessment of the weather situation and how to proffer solution to the devastation also known as El Niño. According to Food and Agriculture Organisation, FAO, in Tanzania, the visit was necessary as torrential rains have rendered 25, 000 households homeless and thrown them into food crisis in the region.
The annual visit came at a time when many East and Southern African countries, including Tanzania, were facing the effects of climate change and recent weather phenomenon such as El Niño. Dodoma region in particular is one of six regions severely affected by El Niño together with Arusha, Mara, Morogoro, Mwanza, and Shinyanaga.

N1 BILLION AGRIC LOAN NOT FOR INTERNET FARMERS--GOV. IKPEAZU

GOVERNOR Okezie Ikpeazu of Abia State has assured farmers in the state of judicious disbursement of the N1billion Commercial Agricultural Credit Scheme Loan which the State recently secured from the Central Bank of Nigeria, warning that it was not for internet farmers.
The governor also told Abia people not to pity him over the present poor revenue of the State, saying that God would handle the situation.
Speaking at a town hall meeting with the people of Abia Central Senatorial District, Ikpeazu said that he would strictly monitor and ensure that the loan was not used a political patronage but must go to genuine farmers who would use the funds to improve agriculture in the State to ensure food sufficiency.
"Let me inform you that we have received N1billion agricultural loan from the CBN. This loan, I assure you, will be judiciously distributed to genuine farmers amongst us. I know our farmers, and let me inform political farmers whose farms are on the internet not to bother coming …

Ministry of Health inaugurates committee on food safety

The Federal Ministry of Health has inaugurated a five-man joint technical committee on food safety and sanitation. A statement from the committee issued in Abuja on Monday stated that the committee would also undertake periodic meetings and make recommendations to relevant authorities on how to promote food safety. The statement said that the inauguration followed a recent memorandum of understanding between the Federal Ministry of Health and a consulting firm on food safety and sanitation -- Gourmet to Your Doorstep Services Ltd. It said Mr Fubara Chuku, National Coordinator, Food and Safety Programme Department of Food and Drugs Services in the ministry, inaugurated the committee. According to it, Chuku enjoins members of the committee to adhere to the terms of the memorandum of understanding. Chuku said Gourmet To Your Doorstep Services Ltd. would provide training programmes that met global best practices in the hospitality industry. The statement quoted Mr Samuel Johnson, Chief E…

7 states begin IFAD's $85m climate change adaptation

The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) has launched its Climate Change Adaptation Agribusiness Support Programme to support farmers in seven northern states. IFAD’s Country Programme Manager in Nigeria, Ms Atsuko Toda, made the development known in a meeting with the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Mr Audu Ogbeh in Abuja on Thursday. Toda explained that the programme was a 70-million-dollar loan and 15 million dollars grant, making a total of 85 million dollars. The manager listed the benefiting states as Kebbi, Jegawa, Borno, Yobe, Katsina, Zamfara and Sokoto. She said each state government would choose three priority value chains, including market, off-takers, processors, farmer organisation, production and capacity building, for the support. ``I am very happy to say that the programme has started and to report that the National Programme Officers and some states officers have received their employment letters. ``We are looking at supporting in e…