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Showing posts from August, 2017

1,000 sesame farmers to benefit from CBN programme

More than 1,000 farmers in Nasarawa State, are to benefit from the Anchor Borrowers Programme of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) for the production of sesame seeds in 2017.
The Commissioner for Agriculture and Natural Resources, Mr Jameel Zakari, made this disclosure to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Wednesday in Lafia.
He said that Gov. Umaru Al-Makura of the state, had approved the constitution of a management team for the project, which he would head, in concert with the Director of the CBN in the state.
Zakari said that members of the committee were drawn from a wide range of stakeholders.
The commissioner said that the State Government had indicated interest to participate in the Anchor Borrowers Programme for rice and sesame seed production, where it had a comparative advantage.
“However, we keyed into the programme a little late in 2016 and decided to leave out rice because of the possibility that it might not yield the desired benefits for our farmers.
“We are concentr…

Kwara rice ready for harvest by November, says Commissioner

The Kwara Government said on Thursday that by November it would begin to harvest the rice cultivated by its small holder farmers under CBN’s Anchor Borrowers’ Programme.
Mr Adegoke Bamidele, the state’s Commissioner for Agriculture and Natural Resources , disclosed this in Ilorin while receiving a Community Scorecard on smallholder farmers’ accessibility to Agriculture financing in Nigeria.
The scorecard was presented by the Centre for Community Empowerment and Poverty Eradication (CCEPE), a partner of Actionaid Nigeria.
Also speaking, Malam Ahmed Mohammed, the Director, Agricultural Engineering and Services in the ministry, said the government started programme with the cultivation of 50 hectares of rice at Tsada Tshonga in Edu Local Government Area of the state.
Mohammed explained that the state keyed into the programme under the Hyst Global Business Limited/Anchor Borrower programme.
Hyst is a rice milling company based in Abuja.
He added that another 3,000 hectares would be culti…

Kano State Govt. approves N10m for production of one million tree seedlings

Kano State Government has ‎approved N10 million for the production one million tree seedlings for the cultivation of eight new lines ‎of shelterbelt.
The state Commissioner for Information, Malam Muhammad Garba, made this known on Thursday in Kano when he briefed newsmen on the outcome of the State Executive Council meeting.
He said that the move was part of the government’s renewed efforts to check desert encroachment in some parts of the state.
He said that the tree seedlings would be produced in designated nursery centres located across the state.
Besides, Garba said that N114 million was approved for the completion and equipping of the library of the College of Arts Science and Remedial Studies.
He said that the state government also approved N57 million for the procurement of sporting materials and equipment for various sports in the state.
The commissioner said that N20 million was approved for the re-accreditation of 10 new courses at Audu Bako College Agriculture, Dambatta.

UNN develops technology incubator to curb post-harvest losses, says VC

The University of Nigeria, Nsukka (UNN) has developed a technological incubation centre which would be used to tackle post-harvest losses plaguing farmers across the country.
Prof. Benjamin Ozumba, the Vice-Chancellor of the university, made this known in Abuja on Thursday when he appeared on a News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) Forum.
Ozumba, who said that UNN was probably the first university in West Africa to have a technological incubation centre, said that the institution was also planning to develop and build a world-class science park.
“University of Nigeria is the first university, possibly in West Africa, to have technological incubator.
“There is a group called `AGROMESS’ that has developed an appliance which can be used to market agriculture products.
“One of the hazards, one of the big problems in agriculture is post-harvest wastage. People produce things like maize, if they don’t sell through the evening, the rest will be wastage.
“But now, when you have capacity to market th…

Researchers introduce new technology to speed up cassava multiplication

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Scientists are now using Semi-Autotrophic Hydroponics (SAH) technology to speed up the propagation of clean cassava planting materials. Mr Godwin Atser, the Communication Expert of International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA), made this known via a news statement on Tuesday in Abuja.
He said that the use of SAH technology for cassava multiplication was the brainchild of the “Building an Economically Sustainable Integrated Seed System for Cassava (BASICS)’’ project.
He said that the SAH technology involved the use of modified soil, holding plant roots in planting pots with little water.
“Usually the trays are filled with a little amount of water and the soil transports the moisture up to the plant roots; yet the top of the soil remains relatively dry.
“The roots are encouraged to grow down, and the dry soil on top discourages damp-off and other diseases caused by excess moisture,’’ he said.



Dr Peter Kulakow, a cassava breeder with IITA, said that the beauty of the new techno…

Agriculture: APC’s achievementS fantastic but under reported – Saraki

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The President of the Senate, Dr Bukola Saraki, said that the government of the All Progressives Congress (APC) had recorded tremendous achievements in agriculture.
He disclosed in Abuja that the feats of the party in agriculture were, however, not adequately reported.
He berated some media houses for always making headlines with negative stories while ignoring such success stories.
The President of the Senate noted that in the area of rice farming and processing, Nigeria under the APC government, had risen to a point where it would soon be completely self sufficient.
“You can see what the APC government is doing in agriculture but this is something we don’t talk about, the success that the APC government has made is tremendous.
“Am sure in a few years time we will be self sufficient in rice and that is a major achievement for a country that is always importing rice to now get to the stage where we no longer have to import rice.
“But how often do you report it, how often does it ma…

Jigawa Govt. to distribute mini rice mills, harvesters to young farmers

Jigawa Government on Tuesday announced plans to distribute ultra-modern mini rice mills, harvesters and other implements to boost rice production in the state.
Alhaji Jamilu Usaman-Danmalam, Special Adviser to the state governor on Rice Production and Value Chain said the implements would be distributed to youths under the government cluster farming scheme.
The special adviser said in an interview on Tuesday in Dutse, that the items would be issued to the young farmers on loan.
He listed the farming implements to include 100 mini rice milling machines, 100 single row planters, 100 double row planters, 100 mini thrashers, 300 handheld harvesters and 574 manual sprayers.
“The government has concluded all arrangements for this exercise and all the items are on ground.
“We are done with compiling the names of the beneficiaries and we will soon call them for distribution.
“This is part of our plans to empower and encourage youths to go into farming.
“The government is providing these …

Nigeria to revive 6 fertiliser plants soon

The Nigeria Government is to revive six fertilizer blending plants before the end of the year, through the Infrastructure Unit of its Sovereign Wealth Fund. The Managing Director of Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA), Mr Uche Orji disclosed this on Monday in Abuja when the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed paid him a working visit. Orji said that the six plants set for revival across the country would bring the total number of operational fertilizer blending plants to 17. He said the project was done through the Fertiliser Initiative programme of President Muhammadu Buhari’s Administration which was conceived to make the commodity available to farmers at cheaper rate. The NSIA boss disclosed that since the inception of the programme in December 2016, the Authority had delivered more than six million bags of fertilizer below market price to farmers. Specifically, he said a bag of fertilizer which hitherto sold between N11,500 to N13,000 had been brought dow…

Kaduna State Govt. to address shortage of fertilisers for farmers – Perm. Sec.

The Kaduna State Government says it will address the artificial scarcity created in the supply of fertilisers to farmers for the 2017 cropping season. Dr Abdulkadir Kassim, the Permanent Secretary, State Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry Development, said this on Thursday in Kaduna at the state Agricultural Core Delivery Team (CDT) meeting convened by Synergos Nigeria. News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Gov. Nasiru el-Rufai on June 13 launched fertiliser sales for the 2017 farming season in Saminaka Local Government Area. He then assured the farmers that the fertilisers would be sold to them at a subsidised rate of N5, 500 per bag and that each smallholder farmer was entitled to four bags. However, over 50 days after the event, many farmers have complained that they have yet to access the commodity, thereby raising fears of poor harvests at the end of the season. However, the permanent secretary said that the state government was making concerted efforts to address what he …

Nigeria begins registration of yam farmers for export

Yam Farmers, Processors and Marketers Association of Nigeria says it has commenced the registration of its members in the 36 states of the federation to facilitate the yam export programme.
Prof. Simon Irtwange, the Acting President of the association, disclosed this in an interview on Wednesday in Abuja.
Irtwange, who is also the Chairman, Technical Committee on Nigeria Yam Export Programme, said the registration was to organise yam farmers across the country to actualise the targets of the export programme.
“We are registering yam farmers, yam processors, yam marketers.
“At the corporate level, we are registering corporate organisations that are doing yam farming, corporate yam farmers, yam exporters, yam off-takers, yam aggregators and affiliate cooperatives.
“Registration has commenced all over the country.
“So, that process is on-going now; it is after we have registered that all these training in collaboration with IITA can commence effectively.’’
He advised yam farmers across …

Agro-input dealers say adequate farm inputs will boost productivity

The Nigeria Agro Inputs Dealers Association (NAIDA) says the provision of adequate and affordable farm inputs will boost agricultural productivity in the country. Alhaji Saidu Zakari, President of the association, said this on Wednesday in an interview with News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja on the sidelines of a conference organised by the Competitive African Rice Initiative (CARI). CARI is a programme of German Development Cooperation (GIZ), aimed at developing rice farming and making farm inputs available, affordable, and accessible to farmers. Zakari said that seeds, fertilisers and crop protection materials (agro-chemicals) were essential for improving the productivity and income of smallholder farmers in developing countries. “Input supply is a critical factor in inclusive agricultural and rural development; this is why many donors support initiatives that will improve the access of smallholder farmers to quality inputs,’’ he said. He said that Nigeria was facing two key ga…

NOA, BOA partner to reduce non-performing agric loans

The National Orientation Agency (NOA) says it is partnering with the Bank of Agriculture (BOA) to deepen public sensitisation on the Anchor Borrowers policy for better results in the sector.
Mr Paul Odenyi, Head of Press Unit of NOA in a statement in Abuja on Wednesday said that this was necessary as government moved to reposition agriculture as an alternative foreign exchange earner to crude oil.
Dr Garba Abari, the Director-General of NOA, made this known during a working visit to BOA in Abuja.
He said that government had shown political will to reposition agriculture through its policy direction in the sector, adding that both institutions had the platforms to reposition agriculture and make impact in the country.
He however stressed the need for robust public enlightenment on the various government policies if they were to be effectively implemented and pledged to utilise NOA’s platforms across the country to sensitise Nigerians.
He said that especially with smallholder farmers…

Awolowo advocates massive investment in agric production, processing

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Mr Olusegun Awolowo, Executive Director, Nigerian Export Promotion Council (NEPC), says Nigeria can benefit from African Development Bank’s (AfDB) prediction of economic growth if it invests in agricultural production and processing.
Awolowo , who made the statement in an interview in Abuja on Tuesday, said the AfDB’s prediction is not surprising, given that most African nations, including Nigeria, have renewed efforts in the production of agricultural commodities.
In its 2017 annual report, the bank painted a bright picture for Africa, predicting an economic growth of 3.4 per cent within the year and 4.3 per cent in 2018, after the slowdown of 2016.
The projection is based on the assumption that as commodity prices recover, the world economy will be strengthened and domestic macroeconomic reforms are entrenched.
The bank attributed the negative growth of the past year to lower commodity prices.
The executive director said that making the prediction a deliberate economic pursuit by …

Don’t allow foreigners collapse local fish production – Association

Mr Rotimi Oloye, the National President, Catfish and Allied Fish Farmers Association of Nigeria (CAFFAN) has advised the Federal Government not to allow foreigners to collapse local fish production in the country.
Oloye gave the advice on Tuesday during the South West All Fish Farmers Congress in Ibadan.
He said the association had discovered that due to the price war in the fish industry, some Nigerians had insisted that foreigners should not be allowed to import frozen fish into country.
“Foreigners should not be allowed to import frozen fish into the country because this will affect local fish farmers.
“Study has shown that in Ghana for example, importation of frozen fish has disengaged local fish farmers with foreigners succeeding in creating an impression with the Ghanaian government that producing fish locally is not profitable.
“Government of Ghana now allows different people to bring in frozen fish and thereby disengaging the local farmers in Ghana.
“If you go to Ghana now, …

Agric minister says high interest rates on loans hinder agricultural production

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The Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Chief Audu Ogbeh, says the high interest rates on loans given by commercial banks to farmers have been hindering agricultural production in the country.
The minister said this in Birnin Kebbi on Tuesday during the meeting of All Progressives Congress (APC) Governors’ Forum on policy synergy to ensure the national development.
“The banks charge between 25 and 35 per cent interest on loans given to farmers to boost agricultural production in our country.
“This attitude is capable of discouraging farmers to borrow for the improvement of their farming activities.
“One of the biggest problems which farmers face is insufficient finance and the interest rate on loans is high.
“How can farmers borrow? How can industrialists borrow? And how can manufacturers borrow?” he asked.
Ogbeh said that the development had also affected the industrial and economic growth of the country, adding: ‘‘The interest rate of bank loans today stands at between 2…

Osinbajo to inaugurate N10bn WACOT Rice Mill in Argungu, Kebbi

The Acting President, Prof Yemi Osinbajo, is to inaugurate the N10 billion WACOT Rice Processing Mill in Argungu, Kebbi, on Tuesday. A statement by Alhaji Abubakar Muazu, the Chief Press Secretary to Gov Atiku Bagudu of Kebbi, in Birnin Kebbi said that the acting president was expected to arrive in Birnin Kebbi by 2 p.m. and proceed to Argungu for the inauguration. Osinbajo would be accompanied by Chief John Odigie-Oyegun, the National Chairman of All Progressives Congress (APC) and the Chairman of APC Governors Forum, Gov. Rochas Okorocha of Imo, to Argungu for the programme. APC governors, who were in Birnin Kebbi for their meeting, would also be part of the acting president’s entourage that would be in Argungu for the inauguration ceremony. After the inauguration, Osinbajo would proceed to the Argungu International Fishing and Cultural Festival Village to witness an agricultural show tagged “Dalar Shinkafa’’ (Rice Pyramid), organised to showcase the rice production potential of Ke…

Kwara deputy gov commends Kebbi State Govt’ s agricultural initiative

Kwara Deputy Governor, Mr Peter Kisira has commended the agricultural innovation and initiative of the Kebbi State Government. Kisira made the commendation in Birnin Kebbi, while speaking with newsmen shortly after inspecting the state Rice Plantation and Labana Rice Mills, accompanied by his Kogi State counterpart, Mr Simon Achuba on Tuesday. “The establishment of Labana Rice Mill and state Rice Plantation is a way to diversify the Nation’ s economy away from dependence on oil,’’ he said. He called on other states to key into the agricultural initiative, stressing that Kwara was also making wave with great agricultural drive. Kisira also commended leadership of the Kebbi State government on its agricultural partnership with Lagos State, reiterating the determination of the state government to partner with Kebbi state,especially in making rice available for the people of Kwara. Kisira also commended Kebbi Deputy Gov. Alhaji Samaila Yombe for the construction of customised vehicle, a…

Farmers laud Nestlé Nigeria for effective Sorghum, Millet use in foods production

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A delegation of farmers from four states in the northern part of the country, producing mainly Sorghum and Millet, has lauded Nestlé Nigeria Plc, for utilising their yields to the produce foods — Nestle Milo, Maggi and Golden Morn.
The farmers, representing 89 farming communities that supply the produce from Kaduna, Kano, Katsina and Gombe, gave the commendation during a tour of Nestle’s Factory Complex at Agbara in Ogun.
They comprise of farmers who are community leaders and representatives of the farming clusters that are beneficiaries of the Nestlé SMS Project.
They were at the factory to see how the grains and legumes they produce on their farms were transformed into high quality nutritious products for families.
Sorghum is used in the manufacturing of food products, especially Milo, the energy food drink that is a staple in Nigerian homes.
Mr Bature Abdullahi, Coach and Chairman, Tafoki Farmers Cluster, Katsina State, said: “We came to see what Nestlé Nigeria is doing with the p…