Category Archives: AGRICULTURE NEWS

Agriculture News in Nigeria Today – Latest news about Agriculture from Nigeria .Agriculture is the cultivation and breeding of animals, plants and fungi for food, fibre, bio-fuel, medicinal plants and other products used to sustain and enhance human life.

Osun government approves N377m loan for rice farmers

 

 

Osun Government has approved N377.1 million agriculture loan for 1,000 rice farmers to cultivate 1,000 hectares of farmland in the state.

In a statement by his media aide, Mr. Sola Fasure, on Sunday in Osogbo, Governor Rauf Aregbesola said the loan would be accessed from the Bank of Agriculture. He added that the loan was approved by the State Executive Council as requested by the State’s Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security.

Aregbesola said farmers in Ola-Oluwa, Egbedore and Ejigbo Local Governments would benefit from the loan which is a facility under the Anchor Borrowers Programme of Central Bank of Nigeria.

EU ships leave Morocco as bilateral fisheries deal expires

 

 

A four-year fisheries agreement between Morocco and the European Union (EU) has expired on Saturday midnight GMT and as a result, the EU ships left the Moroccan waters.

Some 120 vessels from EU countries, including 90 vessels from Spain, have left the country as the two parties did not reach a new deal.

Morocco gets about 40 million euros (46.7 million U.S. dollars) every year for allowing the EU vessels to fish in its waters and since April 20, Morocco and the EU have been negotiating a new deal which did not yield posetive results.

 

AfDB injects $40m into agriculture development in Nigeria , others

 

 

The African Development Bank (AfDB) has injected an aggregate of $40 million seed fund into agriculture development projects in Nigeria, Ethiopia, Mali and 24 other countries. The development came under its Technology for African Agricultural Transformation (TAAT) initiative.

Adeniyi Adediran, the TAAT coordinator for Nigeria Livestock Compact gave the information at forum in Ibadan.

The fund, however, is to be distributed among 15 sub-projects with nine compacts and six enablers.

The livestock compact on poultry and small ruminants are already being undertaken in Ethiopia, Mali and Nigeria, where cassava skin is being converted to affordable livestock feed.

The projects, he said are being managed by key partners in Business Innovation Facility (BIF), UKAID and the Department for International Development (DfID).

Tunde Amole, the ILRI country representative, said at the meeting that the major focus in South West Nigeria under TAAT is to promote High Quality Cassava Peels (HQCP) mash for the livestock industry, adding that HQCP could be fortified and used to feed livestock especially poultry and pigs.

Federal government to complete all abandoned water projects

Dr Elijah Aderibigbe, the Director, Irrigation and Drainage, Federal Ministry of Water Resources, has assured that the Federal Government will complete all abandoned water projects in the country.Aderibigbe told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja on Friday that the step was necessary to see that previous investments in the sector would not be a waste.According to him, huge sums of money have been invested in some projects, as their completion will be beneficial to all Nigerians.He, however, noted that some projects had been phased out, as completing them would amount to economic waste, saying the present hectares in the country stood at 70,000.‘‘The present administration is continuing from where the previous administration stopped, this means that we are not embarking on any new project for now.‘‘We are actually looking at those projects that are near completion, we are looking at those ones that were abandoned and had reached advanced stages.‘‘We are revisiting them, the Federal Government is providing money.‘‘We have called the contractors back to site, so that the benefits will be enjoyed by all Nigerians, especially where the projects are sited.’’The director said schemes such as the Mamu-Akwa in Anambra and Sabke Irrigation project in Katsina State had been completed and handed over to the primary users through the river basins.He said efforts were ongoing to convert the schemes in two sources of energy and to also see that issues of sustainability when it comes to operation and maintenance were settled.According to Aderibigbe, the Shagari Irrigation project in Sokoto State is almost completed.He said that some projects that were abandoned since the time of Petroleum Trust Fund (PTF) were being resuscitated to see that Nigerians benefit from the water infrastructure.He commended the Federal Executive Council (FEC) for giving its blessings toward meeting the Revised Estimated Total Cost need for some abandoned projects through priority of attention.He said irrigated agriculture practice was fastbecoming an important sector in the economy.According to him, this is not surprising becausemost of the populace rely on agriculture and agro-related activities for their livelihoods.He, however, added that other benefits of irrigated agriculture include the value chain addition through marketing and transportation in food production.‘‘The benefits are enormous, even under a farmer, many would be employed when irrigated agriculture works,’’ he added.He urged Nigerians to take ownership of all water utilities, saying participatory irrigation concept would help to promote sustainability of projects.He director advised the Water Users Association to play a huge role in maintaining water facilities.

Science and Technology paramount in sustenance of food security in Africa – Experts

 

 

The use of science, technology and innovation could help promote the use of urban agriculture to sustain food and nutrition security in African cities, experts say.

The experts who specialise in agriculture, geography and urban planning say that urban agriculture has been neglected in urban planning and development agenda.

Agricultural activities such as crop farming and livestock keeping are deemed as activities of rural dwellers by African urbanites, according to the experts.

They explain that the continent needs to increase the adoption of modern technology and innovations in farming such as using agricultural data monitoring sensors that transmit timely data on amount of nutrients in the soil . Also rainfall and temperatures to mobile phone devices for action.

 

Nigeria Yam Export Programme targets huge earnings

 

 

The Nigerian Yam Export Programme has developed a four-year action plan aiming at earning $10 billion from exporting the product.

This was disclosed by the the National Coordinator, Technical Committee on Nigerian Yam Export Programme, Prof. Simon Irtwange, in Lagos.

He stated that the 2017 – 2020 plan aims at ensuring the improvement and development in all aspects of yam value chain.

He said ‘‘indeed, the government policy on yam export has come to stay; the only action now is how to improve on the process. The committee has developed Action/Work Plan (2017 – 2020) going forward.

The plan objective is to create an estimated one million jobs and earnings of at least 10 billion dollars annually in the next four years. The total cost required to operate the plan is N3.13 billion’’ .

Stakeholders call for standard weight, measure for farm produce

 

 

Stakeholders in the agriculture sector have called for standard weight and measure for rice, cassava and other produce, describing them as critical tools needed to grow the nation’s economy and agriculture value chain,

They made the call during a policy dialogue on standard weight and measure for cassava and rice value chains in Awka, Anambra state, South- East Nigeria .

The meeting was organised by the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD)-assisted Value Chain Development Programme (VCDP).

Mr. Ken Ukaoha, lead Consultant on Weights and Measure to IFAD-VCDP stated that standard weight and measure across the country would ensure that people had value for their money.

In his remarks, National Programme Coordinator of IFAD-VCDP, Mr. Amen Onoja appealed to the Anambra Government for support in ensuring total implementation and compliance.

On his part, Mr. Afam Mbanefo, the state Commissioner for Agriculture, Mechanisation, Processing and Export, said the state government is working to ensure that rice farmers comply with weight and measure regulation.

Also, the state Commissioner for Trade and Commerce, Mr. Christian Mmadubuko noted that standardisation would restore confidence and trust among farmers, traders and consumers.

AfDB to invest $120m to boost cassava production, others

 

 

The African Development Bank (AfDB) has said that it will invest $120 million between the next three years to boost the productivity of cassava and eight other commodities on the continent. The nine commodities are cassava, rice, maize, sorghum/millet, wheat, livestock, aquaculture, high iron beans and orange fleshed sweet potatoes.

According to Director for Agriculture, Dr. Martin Fregene who spoke at the fourth international conference on cassava, being organized by the Global Cassava Partnerships for the 21st Century, GCP21, in Cotonou, Benin Republic“Transforming cassava on the African continent would help African nations to cut imports and redirect about $1.2billion into African domestic economies” .

The cassava conference is being attended by more than 450 local and international partners in the cassava sector, coming from research and development organizations, government, farming community, and the private sector.

The bank’s investment in cassava comes at a time when African governments are scaling up efforts to end food imports and create wealth.

Fregene said cassava is a strategic crop for Africa’s food security and wealth creation for youth, and women, adding that “another dimension to the importance of cassava is in nutrition where cassava can enhance the nutrition of children directly or as feed for poultry and other livestock.”

With the largest volume of cassava coming from Africa, cassava supports more than 350 million people in Africa.

The Minister of Agriculture for the Republic of Benin, Dr. Gaston Dossouhoui said cassava remained the cheapest staple consumed by Africans, adding that “addressing the constraints of cassava production in Africa will have a positive impact on African farmers.”

He lauded AfDB President, Dr. Akinwumi Adesina for his commitment of investing in agriculture and cassava, in particular.

The minister also commended the GCP21 for organizing the cassava conference, emphasising that it would contribute to knowledge sharing that would help in removing the bottlenecks in the cassava sector.

Deputy Director-General for Partnerships for Delivery at the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA), Dr. Kenton Dashiell, said unlocking the potential of cassava required partnerships and close collaboration of partners to address the constraints facing cassava.

 

 

AfDB injects $40m into agriculture development in Nigeria , others

 

 

The African Development Bank (AfDB) has injected an aggregate of $40 million seed fund into agriculture development projects in Nigeria, Ethiopia, Mali and 24 other countries. The development came under its Technology for African Agricultural Transformation (TAAT) initiative.

Adeniyi Adediran, the TAAT coordinator for Nigeria Livestock Compact gave the information at forum in Ibadan.

The fund, however, is to be distributed among 15 sub-projects with nine compacts and six enablers.

The livestock compact on poultry and small ruminants are already being undertaken in Ethiopia, Mali and Nigeria, where cassava skin is being converted to affordable livestock feed.

The projects, he said are being managed by key partners in Business Innovation Facility (BIF), UKAID and the Department for International Development (DfID).

Tunde Amole, the ILRI country representative, said at the meeting that the major focus in South West Nigeria under TAAT is to promote High Quality Cassava Peels (HQCP) mash for the livestock industry, adding that HQCP could be fortified and used to feed livestock especially poultry and pigs.

Nigerian women to host food fair in Abuja

 

 

Nigeria’s National Council of Women’s Societies (NCWS) says it is set to organise a food fair in Abuja, in collaboration with Travel Marketing Partners.

The President of NCWS, Mrs. Gloria Shoda, gave the statement in Abuja, adding that the event is aimed at tackling the perennial food shortage in some parts of the country.

The event tagged: “the First National Unity Food Fair 2018” is to hold from Oct. 15 to Oct. 17 at the Peace Park of the International Conference Centre, Abuja.

Shoda revealed that the 36 States of the federation including FCT, as well as private sector players in the food industry will showcase their products and services.

She said that relevant ministries and agencies of the Nigerian Government would equally be part of the fair.

Mrs. Aisha Buhari, NCWS’s Grand Patron and wife of the President, will be representing Mr. President to declare the event open.

Nigeria to produce 200 million tons of cassava annually

 

 

The Nigerian Cassava Growers Association (NCGA) has said it is set to increase the country’s output by threefold to meet the rising demand of the plant from China.

The President of the Association, Segun Adewunmi, said the plan involves increasing cassava output to 200 million tons annually on 5 million hectares by the end of 2021, using a new growing technique and crop variety that yields an average of 40 tons per hectare.

“Chinese firms are demanding for Nigeria’s cassava pellets and we are positioning ourselves to meet this demand in the next three years; for instance, we just got an import request from China and other countries for 10 million tons of cassava chips” Adewunmi said.

Nigeria is reportedly the world’s leading grower of cassava, producing 57.6 million metric tons in 2017, exporting about 3.2 million tons annually and earning a record $136 million in 2013.

Large scale rice mills: Nigeria signs agreement with Indian coy

 

 

The Federal Government has signed an agreement with an Indian company to procure and supply 10 large scale rice mills worth N10.7 billion before the end of this year.

Signing the agreement in Abuja , Chief Audu Ogbeh, the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, said the move was to ensure the country met its target of achieving self-sufficiency in rice production.

Ogbeh said the mills to be built by MV Agro-Engineers Ltd., would assist in rice processing and match the growing number of rice farmers in the country.

According to him, over 13 million Nigerians are in various farms across the country growing rice and the number could increase to 20 million persons shortly.

The minister said that the mills would be given to off-takers (millers) and the Bank of Agriculture (BoA) would take over the repayment of the loans over a period of 10 years.

He urged the company to give the country good technology and supply adequate spare parts for the mills.

“We are insistent on achieving self-sufficiency in rice production because we can’t afford over five billion dollars a day of importing rice, we don’t have the money and I don’t think any country can afford that line of expenditure.

“We have to produce our food, we will not depend on imports to produce our food, we cannot survive on a diet of import of everything and we have the land.

“This formula of partnerships is working for us and we want to thank you for being part of it. We will continue with it because whatever subsidy we give or support is in long term bigger profit than anything we will make in cash.

“We thank you for giving us at good price and we know you can make good and the best machines for us because if you do well now, you will do more in the future,’’ .

The Director, Agribusiness and Marketing in the ministry, Alhaji Muyiwa Azeez, said the rice mills would be made available to off-takers in 10 states.

“The ministry has worked hard with the company and other stakeholders to review the delivery process of the mills before December, 2019,’’.

The Managing Director of the Bank of Agriculture, Alhaji Kabir Mohammed, said the partnership was geared toward ensuring food security in the country.

Mohammed said the Bank had many programmes aimed at supporting youths and women in agriculture.

The Managing Director of the Indian company, Jamu Babba-Dan’agundi, assured of the company’s commitment to deliver the mills promptly.

The  Federal Executive Council (FEC) in April approved N10.7 billion for the establishment of the 10 rice mills.

The minister for state agriculture Heineken Lokpobiri briefed journalists at the end of the FEC meeting saying that the 10 mills had the capacity to produce 100 tonnes of rice per day and would be managed by private rice millers.

The minister listed the benefitting states to include Kebbi, Zamfara, Benue, Kogi, Bayelsa, Anambra, Kaduna, Ogun, Niger and Bauchi.

 

World’s fish consumption unsustainable, FAO warns

 

A third of the world’s oceans are overfished and fish consumption is at an all-time high, raising fears over the sustainability of a key source of protein for millions around the world, the UN warned in a report .

According to a report released by the Food and Agriculture Organisation, overfishing is particularly bad in parts of the developing world where many people already struggle to get enough nutritious food to eat.

“There’s too much pressure on marine resources and we need significantly more commitments from governments to improve the state of their fisheries,“We predict that Africa might have to import fish in the future,”” said Manuel Barange, director of the FAO fisheries and aquaculture department.

 he told the Media,  that shortages could lead to higher prices, disproportionately affecting the poor.

Barange said Africa had great potential for aquaculture but needed support in terms of finance, feed and supply of fish.

Fish farming or aquaculture – the fastest growing agricultural sector for the past 40 years – has been largely responsible for making more fish available, said the report.

As catches from the open sea continue to dwindle, more countries are turning to fish farms.

In Algeria, the government is encouraging farmers in the Sahara desert to grow fish to increase their income and boost fish production.

Critics say it can damage the environment and put disease and invasive species into the wild, but Barange said the solution was to have “proper regulation, legislation and monitoring and control”.

Traditional fishing nations are also promoting the potential of fisheries to improve nutrition and end hunger.

Globally, the percentage of stocks fished at unsustainable levels increased to 33.1 in 2015, from 31.4 in 2013 and 10 in 1974.

Fish consumption reached an all-time high of 20.2 kg (44.5 lb) per person from 9 kg in 1961, said the report and further rises are expected as health-conscious consumers turn to fish.

Currently, 3.2 billion people rely on fish for almost 20 per cent of their animal protein intake.

Shakuntala Thilsted, research programme leader at international nonprofit WorldFish, said reducing losses and waste would go a long way towards making fisheries sustainable, with an estimated 35 per cent of catches thrown away.

“Fish heads, fish bones are (the) parts that are most nutritious.

”Why aren’t we using innovative solutions to turn this into nutritious, palatable food?” she said.

Abia Governor advocates replacement of flowers with palm trees

Governor Okezie Ikpeazu has urged the people of Abia State to replace flowering shrubs on the streets with high-yielding Tenera species of palm trees.

Ikpeazu gave the charge at the Abia State Ministry of Agriculture Ahiaba Umueze Palm Nursery, while distributing two million seedlings to the citizens.

He said that the high-yielding palm species could produce over 15 palm trees at once and would improve the economic fortunes of the people.

He said that he had directed that the palms be planted on street medians, adding that they were more economically productive than flowering shrubs, which he described as “useless’’.

He said that if the people of Abia would cultivate the Tenera palms in large quantity, it would provide jobs for the jobless youths.

He expressed the hope that every local government chairman, who would be given 40,000 seedlings each, would share them to all the farmers in their council areas.

The governor prayed that the seedlings would provide bountiful harvests and benefits for those who would plant it.

Earlier, the Commissioner for Agriculture, Chief Uzo Azubuike said that the idea of boosting the state’s economy through agriculture was in response to the government’s policy thrust of making agriculture one of its pillars for development.

He said that the ministry was doing everything to ensure that the state government’s plan to instill confidence in all operators within the agricultural value chain in Abia was realised.

Azubuike said his ministry had pioneered mushroom farming in Abia, revolutionised poultry farming with three clusters of farms and bought equipment for mechanised agriculture for Abia farmers at subsidised rate.

He thanked the governor for the palm planting initiative and promised that his ministry would do everything to support his visions for the progress of Abians.

Nigerian government donates feeds to livestock farmers

 

The Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development has donated animal feed concentrate and mineral salt to 100 livestock farmers in Kano State.

Mr. Muhammad Adamu, the State Coordinator of the Ministry said while distributing the feeds to  beneficiaries in Kano that the gesture was part of a programme initiated by the Nigerian Government to assist livestock farmers and enhance their activities.

The coordinator said that twenty of the beneficiaries supply milk to L&Z Integrated Ltd, a privately owned farm.

“Recently in Kano, we established four water harvesting structures; two in Dawakin Tofa Local Government Area and two in Rogo Local Government Area.It is aimed at helping livestock farmers to access drinking water, especially during the dry season,” Adamu said.

Dr. Husaini Ganduje, the state Chairman, Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association, commended the government for donating the feed.

He called on the government to continue assisting livestock farmers and advised the beneficiaries not to sell the commodity.