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THE NAT(ON FR IDA V, AUGUST 31, 2012

AGROftElliSINESS

17

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'l\Tigerian farmers can reap from global grain slump' ICEJUAN ralners can benefit £Tom the United States' maize Cll~ failure now driving rommodilteS'prices at the worler market iIlld threatening food security, an expert, Dr Joe Alungwu, ha~ said . Atungwu, the Director, Centre for Community-'3ased Farming Scheme (COBFA!:i), Federal Uruversity of Agricu1ture,. Abeokuta, (}gun State, said fi\rmers, espedilly those in l.hr Southwest. can begin an awessive second cr0pping of ma Ize neAt month and make good mone'/ in the international markel He said the ma!:sive production of the commodity Is required worldwide for stcd.. to be replenished and prices 'Xl drop, follow -

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Stones by Daniel Eallet, Agrle Correspondent ing the unpredictability of climate change which has af(ected food production in some parts of the

US.

Compared toothercountrlc!s, the

expert said, Ni~eria lw good soil to produce malZe in abllndance, aditing that this would boost farmers' profits. According to reports, maize is selling for an average of $8.50 per bushi!, while soybean is selling for S17.50. These are among the highest-ever prices . Forecasts have indicated that maize may re.1~ SlO and soybeans may go as high as 520. For Nigeria, he said this

presents new opportunity. Most of the world production of the commodities are used as either food or as food industry inpu t. Both commodi ties also serve as main raw materials in anirnaJ feed manufacturing, The United States is ex.J'CC':ed to produce under 100 million lonnes this year of maize as a result of the crop failure. Atungwu said Nigeria has the capacity to produre enough maize for the g1oba.1 marlcet,. even if there was no crop failure. He lamented that agriculture, which was the foundation of the nation's economic growth in the past, has taken the back. seat due to manr years of neg lect and a shift 0 emphaSiS in favour of crude oil.

Pig rearers lam.ent

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HE Chairman., Pig Farmers Association of Nigeria (pFAN), Dyo State chapler, Mr Victor Akimelere, said the unfavourable business environment was takin& a toll on members. He said III Ibadan that poor market prices and lack of incentives by government at aU levels were the major challenges being hced by pig fanners. Ae said prices of the major ingred.ienls uSed as pig feeds, such as palm kernel cake, tirewery waste, groundnut cake and soya beans had gone up, Ak1nrelere said bre~~ waste, which used tobesoldat]'J3per Jcilo.. gmm.me now costs N7 while palm Umeicake, which wassold forNlO per kilogramme had gone up to

N25.

Attem{'ting a cost·benefit analysis, he srud pig fanners were spend ing more in terms of expenditure thiin income. He said it cost an average ofN280 to buy feed c:quivalent to a kilo~e Weight of II pig. -Vet, we hive jU5t suCceeded in seUing a 'pig for ~250 ~ kilogramme. So. we are lI'ICUl"CIRg great foss,."he said.. ·We have been attending seminars where government even asswed us that they will ensure that banks lend us money atsingledigit interest rate. but even the banks are not forthcoming. - he added. He Wled Dl'I governments to assist pig fanners to boost food producHon.

'Fadama ill project a success' HE Fadama III p r oject is a success story oro the Plateau with more than N17 million Padama Users Equity Fund (FUEF) and various proJects funded, ac-

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M;~~3~':t \3:;d~,Co-ordinator, Dandam said in Jos that the fund would enable th~ farmers to access loans for economic activities with their accounts as security. He explained that Fadama ill was expected 10 organise the rommunily into co-operative groups

based on t,M,ir economic interests. He said the pro;ect had so far sensitised and mObilised s uch groups based on the economic interests to enable them to pool their resources for optimal performance and maximu benefits. Vandam said a tolal oESI Fadama Community Associations (FCAs) have been formed., adding that the associations comprised 1,215 Fadama. User Groups (FUGs) across Plateau's 17 loCal governments areas.

Food security exhibition holds Sepl10

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IFAD: small fanners 11 feed the world by 2015 HE Pre-iden!. International Fund lor AP'lcWtural Development (IF'), Dr Kanayo Nwanze, has said small famlers will feed the Horld by 2015. Nwanu spoke In Abuja al a forum bv the I\.ew, "'-geney of Nigeria (NAN). He said 500 mlllj -.n households were al~dy rrodu"ing 80 percent o f food for g lob •• 1 consu mpti(l!\, adding tha t tl' e h ig hest producers are 111 the dt'\'d0l'ulg countries. Hee.l:pressed dejl,l1t at the turnaround In the fortunes of smallholder farmu~, wh"m he claiml!d, beg;m with _,i5 a,·;s.lmption of office as IFAD'~ helm <milO in 2009. Before the latest d ~velopment, hi! said the intHnatiJIlal community had undelTlUled ;olallholder agf!culture, which it R'g. lrded as "hopeless practice".

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HI said 500 million households produce 80 per ant of the food that " consumed globally and most of them are in the developing world; we must focus on smailllo!der agriculture. HS mallholder agriculture was looked down by most of the International communit), as a hopel(.>!;s practice. Today, the private sector, go\'ernmcnlS of the north ilnd of ihe south, recognise the powerful role of smallholder producers to feed not onl)' themselves but the ..... orld." Nwanze $aid his vision on assumption o f office, which was direo.::ted at smallholder farmers - the youth and women - had been sharpened as discussions at International fo ... on agriculture usuaJly em phasise issues related to Ihese th ree groups.

HWe ha.'c turned this around, not just by speaking.. but by demonstrating what this can do. We have been able to help organise farmers and women', organisations, linking them to international markets. ~ In Guatemala . th e farnlers'organisations we work with, ilre tne major s uppliers of French beans to Wall Mart in the US. Cocoa produ~rs in Sao Tome are the main supplier.. of high quality cocoa to C.fe Direct in tfie UK." He said in Uganda, oil palm producers howe worked with a company producing agg~vely more than 10 percent of oil palm requirements, adding that hIS vision is to creale market opportunities through IFAD partners hips for smalilioider farmers to enab le thenl to become h ighly commerdalised .

Finn gives N54m storage facility to traders WOMEN 1 sh trading group in Ab"a rot 'm State, lbaka Womell Fisl Sellers MultiPur~ Co-nj)fiflh'e Society. has praised Moh; Pr .)(tucing NIgeria for providing il .,.. th a fish stor· age facility. rts Presidl'l'lt. ~hs Ha nnah Et~ fit , $!lid since tho!oilj'!; nt donated the N54 million fdCi It: to the group in March, I ~ a cl h 'IUes have increased. Etefit said ti l.;' equi , ment hasrold and dry fISh s tor.lge faoWies and is deproyed for lise by members in Ibeno and lbal.a communities, She explained tI'W t the improve-

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ment in the businesses has attracte d more members to it, increasing its membership from 17 to 30 between April and July. She said : " With the fllcility, we no loroger travel more than 35 kilometres to Eket to s tore our fish in cold roonu;.w Before Mobil gave us the equipment, we never processed up to half a ton of fish in a month, but With the faci lity, we handle up to three tonnes In a month," she said , adding that II cold room within the !bak.. fishing sett lement offers convenience .. nd reduces cost.

WWe are selling a rrocessed kilogr01mme of fish at N .oooas .. s,.. inst ihe N t ,2oo sold elsewhere In the slate, and this price dUference has given us a lot of customers. MWe ha ve put the cold room to good use and we are making so muth profit that we deposit moner. in our bank accounts e\'ery week, ' Etelit said. She said the cold foom has reduced the los.ses hitherto incurred while ferrying fish to Eket for storage. Yin transporting fish to and from Eket, we lose some 01 our fish, especially seafood to d estruction, - she said.

IiE First Southv.'est Farmers and Food Security exhibition wiU h old on September 10, the Managing Director, Chubbies and fieldS, Dr. Akin Ajiboye, has said. Addressing reporters in Lagos, Ajiboye saialhe ex hib ition wfiich is bemg su ppo rted by Oodua Chambers of Commerce will hold in Ado-Ekiti, the Ekiti State capital . lie said it would attract fanners from the Southwest slates to re-enact the achie\'emenlS record ed in the Western Region when a~cul­ ture was the main sta y of II rev enue. He said over time the hustration of farmers had become obvious because of lack of support from various governments, a situation that has red 10 low capacity utilisation of arable lands meant for productive farming . This, according to him. this has

By Musa Odoshlmoktle led to the importation of stable food stull, which ordinarily could have been produced in the country, "The reason for thi, p'aradigm sn lrt is the rus h for 011 mone)' whldl has made e\'erybody toshif! focus at the detriment of a~icuL­ lure, which has the CapaCil);- fo : employ our t~ming you ths who roam the streets in seArch of job." He said Ihe event became impuative because of the crisis of livelihood that had been the lo t of the people. YOur people have become more impoverished due to lack of ~tials of IUe, the main content being foods for sustainable livelihood. Ajoboye maintained. that the administrations in the Sou thwes t states have moved to consolidate its ga.4ts in agriculture by intensifying farming and also venturing into business in the sector. H

'Hybrid seeds for 7,100 farmers'

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o fewer than 7,100 peasant

farmers will rta'iye 71 tonnes 01 hybrid ~ in Kudan L0cal Goyernment AreiI of Kaduna State.

the Northwest C(H)rdinator of Sord\um Transfoltrliltion Value Chain. ~ Vakubu Alar, has $1ki. He said the programme \\-'as under the Agricultural Transformation A~ of the Federal Governmenl Alar said it was a four-year programme intnx!.ucm to ~ farmers' production to achieve national food security. He said the programme was launched in Kudan Local Government Area because of the people's

contributions to sorghum production, "We are going to launch the same programme in Kano, Katsina and Mafumfashi for the benefit of sorghlWl farntels.in those plaCes. "1 want to appeal to fMtneB 10 take advantage 'or th e programme to mllke SQrdllWl a big bUSlllCSS for the benefit cirall. "lhese arc improved. .seeds with high yield,. he nee the nero for ow farmers to try it." AJar said. The Chairman of Kaduna State bl"8t'M;h of All farmers' Association of

Nigeria. ADlajiAdaJnu Batw'e-Kudan.

described the programme as good.

Liberia gets $lm for poultry farming

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mERlA has receh·ed. a 51 millioo for J?Oul.~ fanning.. ao:orihng to liberia s Minister of Agriculture Florence Clleooweth. The farm will produa! consumable poultry products and bring M ",d 10 Un...... ~We want to bring to an end tilt! importation of poultry products,

gran! from Nig~

~ythee1dofthisyear:

"Well have al OW'sile in Grand Cape MOtffit County over 7D,(XXI day-01d dlidc:s. s.xne ci these will be . 'ell to other farmer.s who hin", an ~ in

I,,>, ~-;" •• ~ '~··~~as~Fann aftu' ~ PresidentOlusmgun ~,IS meant to help redUCl.! the incideri'I" of bird Du that come'l &om

imDOricd..... pmductsaod raise tfl!"qualily clknI _ TIlt! ll'beria ministry is also working on a rom production programme to produce local feed. for the chi~ Chenoweth said the farming pm;ect and its com feed.inS prog:ranune will amte jclb opportunities b-I..ilierians, espeOally young ~ wh:I want 10 ~ m poultry faiming..


THE NATION, 31 AUGUST, 2012