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Showing posts from June, 2017

Monarch suggests early distribution of fertiliser

The Emir of Wamba in Nasarawa State, Alhaji Lawal Musa-Nagogo, has suggested early distribution of fertiliser and inputs to farmers to boost food production in the country.
Musa-Nagogo made the suggestion on Wednesday while speaking with newsmen in his palace in Wamba, Wamba Local Government Area of the state.
He said that early distribution of the commodity and other farm inputs to farmers by the government would assist farming and increase food production.
According to him, we are now in June and farmers have yet to get fertiliser and seedlings.
“We are all aware that there is fertiliser in the markets but the commodity is expensive for ordinary farmers.
“It is only well-to-do individuals that can buy the fertiliser in the open market.
“I am appealing to the government to please provide fertiliser at the right time to farmers.
“If you ask me the right time for the government to distribute fertiliser, I will tell you that it should be between February and March.
“This is the most id…

Kogi ADP says agric extension workers are to be deployed to farms

Kogi Agricultural Development Project (ADP) says agricultural extension workers will soon be deployed to rural communities across the state to assist farmers with extension services to boost their productivity.
Mr James Ogunmola, General Manager of the ADP, said this at a meeting of Core Delivery Team (CDT) of the State Partnership for Agriculture (SPA) in Lokoja on Wednesday.
The meeting was organised by Synergos Nigeria, with support from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF).
Ogunmola said that the extension workers, who were recently trained, were primed for deployment to various communities to assist the farmers.
According to him, the effort is aimed at supporting farmers to produce more food and cash crops in the state.
“It is to also encourage civil servants to go back to farm, with assurances that they would be supported with extension services.
“’We need to increase the production of food and cash crops, with emphasis on cassava because the market for the crop …

FG begins yam export to UK Thursday

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Nigeria will on Thursday begin yam exports to the United Kingdom with 72 tons of yams in three containers, the Minister of Agriculture, Chief Audu Ogbeh said. He said the matter was tabled at the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting on Wednesday as a major milestone in the export market and diversification process. According to the minister, the country would strive to export more yams and other food commodities to other countries to earn more foreign exchange. “We had cause to inform the council that last week we completed arrangements for the first formal export of Nigerian yams to the United Kingdom. “I know that we have had reactions from the Nigerian public. “Some people have asked if that is of any importance; others have asked if by exporting yams we are not going to subject Nigeria to hunger.
“I had to inform council today that that would certainly not arise. “You would remember about Match or April this year some of you asked the same question: is Nigeria going to face f…

Commissioner urges increased youth participation in agriculture

The Anambra Commissioner for Agriculture, Chief Afam Mbanefo, has advised youths to take advantage of the best training in agronomy practices offered by the ministry to boost food production.
Mbanefo made the call on Wednesday in Awka while briefing representatives of the Gov. Willie Obiano media team on the achievements of the administration in agriculture so far.
“With good agronomy practice, vegetable farming can easily net a farmer between N300,000 to N350,000 in six weeks.
“We are targeting youths for increased food production in 2017; that is why these programmes are organised periodically to sensitise and encourage youth farming, to boost yield in their farms.”
Mbanefo attributed the launch of the programme to the governor’s desire to alleviate farmers’ low standard of living.
“Community Farm Development Programme was launched by Gov. Obiano to boost the living standard of farmers in the hinterland and bring development to the grassroots.

“This will attract youths into agricul…

Provide conducive environment for agriculture to thrive, ex-minister urges FG

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A former Minister of Defence, Mr Tokunbo Kayode, has advised the Federal Government to provide an enabling environment for agriculture to thrive in the country.
Kayode, now a farmer, made the call in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Wednesday in Ikaram-Akoko, Ondo State.
According to him, the money earmarked for farmers is inadequate without other inputs such as fertiliser, improved seedlings, harrows and harvesters.
“Government can help, not with money alone, but it can create an enabling environment for agriculture to thrive.
“Government’s investment in agriculture has never worked perfectly and it will not work.
“Only the private sector can drive it well,” Kayode, also a former Attorney-General and Minister of Justice, said.
He advised governments at the state level to challenge commissioners for agriculture, special advisers on agriculture and council chairmen on the development of the agriculture sector.
Kayode said he had over 150 hectares of l…

No cause for worries on yam export

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No cause for worries on yam export By Olukayode Oyeleye The Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Chief Audu Ogbeh, has reassured Nigerians that there is no reason to be anxious about what the new initiative of the federal government on yam export portends for the populace. The minister has specifically said those who are apprehensive about possible non-availability of yams for local consumption as a result of yam export need not be. This week, Thursday, June 29, 2017, signals a new dawn in Nigeria’s food exports, with a consignment of 72 metric tons of yam leaving the shores of Nigeria to Europe and the US, essentially setting the stage for the country’s return to the global yam value chain as a dominant player in the world market. This is long overdue. Nigeria has consistently been reckoned globally as the largest producer of yams, at various times accounting for anything between 65 and 76 per cent of the world production. The Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) report…

Farm practices must change to protect endangered species and habitats

ZURICH, June 27, 2017 — Sustainable agriculture practices must be widely implemented in order to stem an alarming loss of biodiversity and to protect endangered species. This is according to the Standards and Biodiversity report released Tuesday by the International Institute for Sustainable Development. Agricultural production currently accounts for 40 per cent of global land surface and is responsible for 70 per cent of projected losses in terrestrial biodiversity due to widespread land conversion, pollution and soil degradation. “What happens in agriculture matters,” said Scott Vaughan, President-CEO, IISD. “Growing demand for certified products presents a major opportunity to protect our natural resources. The market is rewarding efforts to conserve critical habitats, protect soil and water quality, and mitigate the impacts of climate change. But market forces are not enough.” The market value of certified agricultural products was estimated to be USD 52.5 billion in 2015 for eight ma…

Nobel Prize for Food: Enugu Govt. lauds Adesina’s innovation, pragmatism to agric

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Enugu State Government said on Tuesday that President of African Development Bank (AfDB), Dr Akinwumi Adesina, deserved the award of Nobel Prize for Food and Agriculture, also known as World Food Prize Laureate.
The state’s Commissioner for Agriculture, Mr Michael Eneh, said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Enugu, while reacting to the emergence of Adesina as 2017 World Food Prize Laureate.
According to Eneh, Dr Adesina brought innovation and pragmatism to agriculture and agro-allied business in the country.
“He added much value to agro-products and produce in Nigeria; thus, giving agricultural goods great value for growth both domestically and internationally’’.
He said that Adesina, who was the immediate past Minister of Agriculture under former President Goodluck Jonathan, deserved the award for his enormous contributions to growth of agriculture in Nigeria, ECOWAS and the African continent.
He noted that Adesina through the AfDB had facilitated agricu…

Balogun, Okonjo-Iweala hail Adesina’s emergence as 2017 World Food Prize Laureate

Nigeria’s Chargé d’Affaires to the U.S. Hakeem Balogun and a former Minister of Finance, Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, have lauded the emergence of Dr Akinwumi Adesina as the 2017 World Food Prize Laureate.
Balogun and Okonjo-Iweala told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) correspondent in the U.S. that Adesina’s selection for the prestigious prize was a great honour for Nigeria.
Adesina, who is the current President of the African Development Bank (AfDB), was Minister of Agriculture under President Goodluck Jonathan’s administration.
He was named winner of the 250,000-dollar World Food Prize, regarded as the equivalent of a Nobel Prize for Agriculture, at a ceremony on Monday at the U.S. Department of Agriculture in Washington D.C.
Balogun described Adesina’s emergence as a great honour to our country.
“It is a manifestation of government’s efforts, past and present, at eradicating poverty and placing food on the tables of all Nigerians.
“Dr Adesina is another show of the numerous Nigerians…

Why Adesina won 2017 World Food Prize Laureate

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The World Food Prize Foundation has explained why Dr Akinwumi Adesina won the 250,000 dollars 2017 World Food Prize Laureate prize on Monday.
President of the Foundation, Amb. Kenneth Quinn said Adesina won the prize “for driving change in African agriculture for over 25 years and improving food security for millions across the continent”.
Adesina, President of the African Development Bank (AfDB), was announced on Monday as the 2017 World Food Prize Laureate at a ceremony at the U.S. Department of Agriculture in Washington, D.C.
Quinn explained that the selection of Nigeria’s former Minister of Agriculture for the prize also “reflected both his breakthrough achievements as Minister of Agriculture of Nigeria”.
He said Adesina “led a major expansion of commercial bank lending to farmers as Vice President of Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA) and as Minister of Agriculture in Nigeria, introduced the E-Wallet system”.
Adesina also “introduced initiatives to exponentially in…

AGRICBUSINESS EXPERT CALLS FOR DOCUMENTATION OF FARMERS

AGRICBUSINESS EXPERT CALLS FOR DOCUMENTATION OF FARMERS BY GABRIEL ENOGHOLASE BENIN. - AGRICBUSINESS expert, Mr. Peter Igbinosun has called on government at all levels to formulate policies geared towards documentation of farmers to make agriculture attractive. He also said that incentives such as the provisions of land, seedlings, fertilizers, funds among others should be given to the real farmers to energize their passion for agriculture. Igbinosun who is the immediate past Grower Manager, Rubber Estate Nigeria Limited , stressed the need for the nation to advance from peasant to commercial farming. Speaking during the official inauguration of his private Agro-service firm, P-MAN Integrated Service Nig. Limited (PMIS)) in Benin City, yestetday, Igbinosun urged government to equip farmers with modern technology in order to drive the needed change in the agricultural sector. Besides, he said funding of research institute was paramount in the agribusiness revolution. H…

Food transporters say food prices ‘ll remain high due to bad roads

Food transporters say food prices ‘ll remain high due to bad roads …. appeal to government to end multiple taxation By Gabriel Ewepu ABUJA- FOOD transporters under the auspices of Amalgamated Foodstuff and Cattle Dealers Association of Nigeria, AFCDAN, yesterday, said food prices will remain high due to bad roads across the country. This was stated by the National President, AFCDAN, Alhaji Muhammed Tahir, who said the bad roads across the country have compounded their problems, as they have lost lives and goods amounting to N250 million every week, which over 100 trucks and trailers involve in accidents and sometime breakdown. He said: “We the Amalgamated Foodstuff and Cattle Dealers Association of Nigeria, AFCDAN, are frustrated due to the deplorable state of federal roads across the country, which has caused us delay in transporting food items to the market, and food prices will remain high in the market. “The Jebba Bridge has been damaged due to lack of maintenance and rehabilitat…

Agriculture is the way to become wealthy but it can’t happen the way our parents practiced, IITA says

Developing creative messages/methods that would attract young people to agriculture could help Africa to attract youth to agriculture and end the rising unemployment in the continent, says the Deputy Director General Partnership for Delivery, International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA), Dr Kenton Dashiell today./
In a message to journalists to mark the 2017 Media Day— part of activities to mark the 50th anniversary of IITA on 24 July 2017, Dr Dashiell said addressing the food insecurity question in Africa required collective efforts from the different institutions operating in Africa, stressing that “IITA cannot succeed in isolation.”
He underpinned the importance of creativity in packaging and dissemination of information on agricultural innovation in a way and manner that would attract youth into agriculture, and clear illusions about the sector.
Dashiell explained that for IITA, “our message is this—agriculture is the way to become wealthy. But this cannot happen if it …

IFAD injects N4bn into Ebonyi economy in 2016

The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) said it injected N4 billion into the economy of Ebonyi in 2016 to support farmers.
Mr Sunday Ituma, the State Programme Coordinator, disclosed this on Saturday in Abakaliki while speaking on the recent distribution of farm inputs to farmers by the programme.
“IFAD’s intervention added over 2,500 metric tonnes of rice paddy to the rice production output of the state and supported 6, 245 farmers during the same period.
“We also piloted dry season farming in 2016 with the establishment of 32 hectare demonstration farms and accompanying impressive yields averaging 4.2 tonnes per hectare,” he said.
Ituma said that IFAD’s target was to support 10,000 farmers in 2017 as it has presently verified and approved 455 business plans with 7,478 farmers expected to cultivate 8,252 hectares.
“The cost of matching fund expected for this intervention is over N1 billion for which IFAD will contribute 50 per cent or over N500 million while the …

Nigerian Quarantine Service raises hope on banned agric produce

The Nigerian Agricultural Quarantine Service has expressed optimism that the European Union (EU) will remove the ban on exporting some Nigerian produce to European countries soon.
Dr. Vincent Isegbe, the Coordinating-Director of the service, said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Tuesday in Abuja.
He said the service and other relevant government agencies were working to ensure the removal of the three-year old ban in the first quarter of 2018.
He recalled that the presidency set up an inter-ministerial committee on zero-reject of the country’s agricultural produce to the international markets in 2016.
The committee, according to him, is to look into issues that led to the suspension at the first instance and what caused the extension of the ban as well as to find solution to the problem.
“The committee, comprising the service, Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Federal Ministry of Health, among others, has made progress so far,’’ he observed.
“Excess ag…

Yam export: FG to train farmers on best agronomy practices

The Technical Committee on Nigeria Yam Export Programme, says it will train farmers on best agronomic practices for yam farming to avoid rejection of the produce at the international markets.
Prof. Simon Irtwange, the Chairman of the committee, disclosed this plan in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja on Monday.
The chairman said that poor agronomic practices during farming contributed to the rejection of the country’s produce at the international market, hence the need for the training.
NAN recalls that the Federal Government had announced that the country would commence exportation of about 74 tonnes of yam to Europe and United States of America (USA) by June 29.
Irtwange said the committee was partnering with the Yam Farmers, Processors and Marketers Association of Nigeria to carry out the training.
He noted that the training would help sensitise farmers on the use of pesticides as well as other requirements for the produce.
According to him, we are also …

NAQS urges FG to grant its return to airports to curb import of unsafe agric produce

The Nigeria Agricultural Quarantine Service (NAQS) has appealed to the Federal Government to allow it return to the country’s airports so as to curb the importation of unwholesome agricultural products.
Dr Vincent Isegbe, Coordinating Director of NAQS, told newsmen in Abuja on Monday that the withdrawal of NAQS officers from airports would enable unscrupulous persons to import unsafe products that could engender the spread of diseases and pests.
He said the certification of agricultural products would save for the country billions of naira which would have been used for disease-control measures. Recall that the Federal Government on May 18 ordered that NAQS, NDLEA and Nigerian Immigration Services, among others, should cease to function at the airports.
The government said that the aim of the new policy was to quicken the ease of doing business and that all necessary checks should be done in designated areas.
Isegbe said that barely 12 hours after dislodging NAQS from the airpor…

World needs to pre-empt devastating drought impacts through better preparedness

Seminar at FAO seeks to rekindle international cooperation, wider use of existing tools and approaches 19 June 2017, Rome - Investing in preparedness and building the resilience of farmers is fundamental to facing situations of extreme drought, FAO Director-General José Graziano da Silva said today.
"Saving livelihoods means saving lives - this is what building resilience is all about," he said in a speech at the start of an international seminar on drought organized by Iran, the Netherlands, and FAO and held at the UN agency's Rome headquarters.
Recalling the 2011 drought in Somalia that saw over 250,000 people perish from hunger, Graziano da Silva said: "People die because they are not prepared to face the impacts of the drought - because their livelihoods are not resilient enough."
"For years, the focus has been responding to droughts when they happen, rushing to provide emergency assistance and to keep people alive," Graziano da Silva said…

Ogun flags off 20,000 tonnes fertilizer sales to boost farming

ABEOKUTA-The Ogun State Government under the aegis of the Federal Government Presidential Fertilizer Initiatives, has flagged off the sales of 20,000 tonnes of fertilizers at a subsidized prize of N5,500 to farmers.
The NPK 20-10-10 Golden fertilizer is said to be available across the state's warehouses in Asero, Ilaro, Ikene and Ijebu-Ode where it is sold to farmers at the subsidized prize.
Speaking at one of the warehouses in Asero, the Commissioner for Agriculture in Ogun State, Adepeju Adebajo, lauded the efforts of the state government toward supporting agricultural development in the state.
She noted that the state is first in South West to implement the fertilizer initiative sales, adding that the Governor is working towards protecting the interest of small scale and average farmers to get a profitable harvest.
"Ogun state has signed up to receiving 20,000 tonnes of fertilizers and we are here to launch the sales. This was the vision of the presidency under t…

Sokoto establishes poultry agency

Sokoto - Sokoto State Government has established an agency for poultry development to aimed at attracting about two million people that would tap from the sector.
Malam Imam Imam, media aide to Governor Aminu Waziri Tambuwal, in a statement explained that the agency would work with the Federal ministry of Agriculture to achieve the desired results.
"The new agency will work closely with all stakeholders, notably the Department of Livestock Development of the Federal Ministry of Agriculture, to introduce policy guidelines that will lead to the development of the sector for the benefit of the citizens. It will also equip citizens with needed technical expertise that will assist them in efforts to maximally benefit from the sector.
“Our target is to be the leading state in poultry production in the country, and to serve neighbouring countries in the near future,” the statement read.
It added that about two million people would be engaged in the sector in the next few years in orde…

RUFIN has empowered women economically, women groups say

Some women groups, which benefitted from the Rural Finance Institution Programme (RUFIN), said that the programme had particularly empowered women economically. The beneficiary groups from Agbowa-Ikosi, Ejirin and Mutaku communities in Epe Local Government Area of Lagos State commended RUFIN for improving the lot of women and households in the neighbourhood. Representatives of the women groups told News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Agbowa-Ikosi on Tuesday that the programme had made women to become more relevant in their various households. Mrs Bridget Okute, President, God’s Time Cooperative Society, said that since the women now had a stable source of income, their husbands had been showing more respect for them. She said that members of her group were now able to feed their families and take care of other domestic tasks, adding that they also garnered more respect from their husbands. “Our husbands do not chastise us again because we now assist them financially; unlike before when w…

Katsina AFAN wants FG to empower large scale farmers

The Katsina State chapter of the All Farmers Association of Nigeria (AFAN) has called on the Federal Government to identify and empower large scale farmers grow food and cash crops for local consumption and export.
The state AFAN Chairman, Alhaji Yau Gojo-Gojo, made the call in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) at his Tafkin Bauna farm located in Mai’adua Local Government on Tuesday.
He also advised the government to establish demonstration farms to support local farmers with new farming techniques and improved seeds.
Gojo-Gojo said the government should serve as uptakers for all produce so as to ensure the success of the national food security programme.
According to him, the policy if implemented will promote agriculture, encourage consumption of locally produced food and make farmers more committed to recording higher yield.
He said for the programme to succeed, the federal government needed to have a comprehensive list of genuine farmers to partake in the food…