From: Bamidele Fashube, Abuja
Senate Committee Chairman on Agriculture, Senate Abdullahi Adamu yesterday decried non-adoption of new researches produced by the National Agricultural Research Institutes in the country.
He said about 80 per cent of the researches are wasting on the shelves, stressing need for the adoption of Good Agricultural Practices to increase food productivity.
The former Nasarawa State Governor spoke during his remark at the 11th National Agricultural Show organised by the National Agricultural Foundation of Nigeria to commemorate the World Food Day in Lafia.
The event is themed theme ‘Strategies for Promoting Export of Agricultural products’.
He advised the Federal and State Governments to establish minimum price guarantee schemes for farm produce as a way of encouraging more people into agriculture.
According to the Chairman, Board of Trustees, National Agricultural Foundation of Nigeria, NAFN, “up to this point, a Nigerian farmer in any given commodity is not guided by any price regime to channel his or her efforts in agricultural productions. farmers are left at the mercy of shylocks.
“For those of us who are either farmers or agricultural experts, we know that agriculture in Nigeria has for decades been practiced at the subsistence level even though about 70-80 per cent of the country’s population depend on it for their livelihood. This is fundamentally why we harness much lower yields from our agricultural production and at much slower pace.”
However, he emphasised on need for stakeholders in the sector to embrace modern agricultural technologies to boost farm productivity across all value chains saying.
“We must collaborate with government at the three tiers as well as entrepreneurs to establish better storage facilities,” he added.
Earlier in his address, the Director General , Food and Agriculture Organisation, (FAO) called for the introduction of nutrition study in school curricula.
Represented by Mr. Suffyan Koroma, FAO Country Representative, he advocated for proper food labelling stressing that current global food system have increased the availability and accessibility of processed food.
“Food system must be transformed in a way that all people can consume healthy and nutritious food.
“It must be a collective effort toward healthy diet that include the creation of norms such as labelling and banning of some harmful ingredients, introduction of nutrition in the school curriculum.
In his address, the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Developement, Chief Audu Ogbeh represented by the Permanent Secretary, Dr. Muazu Abdulkadir reiterated government’s commitment towards eradicating hunger by 2030.
“Achieving food security requires an integrated approach that address all forms of malnutrition, productivity, incomes of small scale food producers, resilience of food system and sustainable use of biodiversity and genetic resources”.
The minister acknowledged constraint of inadequate farm input and it’s impact which according to him has greatly affected farmers productivity.
“Government has reformed the e-wallet implementation strategies, operational modalities to improve its efficiency and effectiveness with a view to entrenching transparency and accountability in the process.”