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Vanguard, MONDA'( JULY 11 , 2011- 45

Agric

Financiaivanguard Pioneering project launched to boost quality rice production in Africa pioneering project to' enhance the quality and marketabilily 01 locally_produced rice through improved harve5t and p»tharvest technologies in eIght pilot countries of West and East Africa has Just been launched by tbe Alrica Rice Center IAlricaRlce}.

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De5criblng the project as Mone of the first 01 Its kind for rice in SSA." AlricaRlce economist Dr. Aliou Oiagne stated that improved processing practices and technologies could signilicantly Increase overall rice production by reducing loues . "The reduction of postharvest losses. of 10% will help increase farmers' nominal annual income by about USD32 million in th e eight pilot countries by 2020."

Rice II th e fastest growing source of food In Alrica. The continent accounts lor one third 01 global rice Impor ts as the domestic rice production has not been able to keep p ace with the increases in demand triggered by popul.ation gro\Vlh and rapid urbanization. Smallhold e r farmers and processors In the region generally depend on manual tech,pologles lor rice cultivation and postharvest handling,

BRIEFS KADP wants farmers to establish orchards

processing and storage. "This has resulted in the production of poor quality rice In the region," said Dr. John Manful, AfricaRice he Kadun" State grain quality ezpert. Agricultural Development OJ. Manful eJ: piamed that Programme (KADP) has advised until now more importance was farmeu to establish orchards to given to Increasing rice complement government efforts production. " However, equal toward developing the importance should be given to agricultural sector. imprOving the quality of locallySpeakmg during the week in produced rice. Otherwise the Kaduna. the KADP Director, l ower qu ality dome. tic rice Agricultural SelVlces, Mr Jacob cannot compete witb higher Daniel. said economic trees quality imported rice." rem ained crucial in achieving The project will focus on the sustalllable agricul tu ral development and evaluation of development suiLlble harvest and postharvest He noted that the state was technologies lor producing conducive for the establishment qUidiry rice products that of orchards, adding that such respond to market demands. At farms wou ld create additional the same time, local farmers and sources of income to farmers. ptocessors in th.e target countries He Said that the establishment will be trained to app ly these of orchards was necessary in technologies. viewof ovemmenrs drive tow.acd Tbe project will also offer ensunng food securiry. opportunities to local '"Trees such as orange, mango, housebo lds to raise their guava, pawpaw and banana are incomes by promoting the beneficiaito farmers because of development of new rice-based theIr economic and commercial produc~ and rice by-products. advantages, h e sa.id. It will also eJ:plore the use of rice He nid seedlings were being for producing fortified lood produced by the agency lor sale items. to farmers, ddding: "\Ve arc The findings of the applied collaborall ng with some research activities are eJ:pecled . nurseries for the production of to feed into national and the needed seedlings." regional agricultural poliCIes relating to ·,he ri ce sector. Research based analytical support will be provided lor the establishment of a r egIonal mecba.nlsm to harmonize and r:oordinate rice policies through s trong linkages witb key regional economic communities. The five-year project Is a1igned to the common goal 01 A s the global populatIon AlricaRice and the C anadian ~ ncreases . so does the in t ernationa.1 Development number of mouths to leed.. As the Agency leIDA), which $upports it. Both seek to increase food ' Worl d Population Day is marked today , th.egood news is _ security and Improve the that In add ition to providing livelihood s of small sca le food, innovations in sustainable farmers and entrepreneurs in agriculture can provide a sub-Saharan Africa through solution to many of the targeted research, policy and challenges that a growing training. popula tIon presents. "Agriculture is emerging as a solution to mitigating climate change. redudng public health. problems and COSIS, making cities nlore livable, and neating jobs in a s t agnant globa l economy, _ said Dolnielle Nierenbe rg, Directo r of World watch Institut e's fdflQing, stressed that under the Nourishing the Planet project, a arrangement 1150 tractors WIth two· year evaluation of cillupleteset of implements have environmentally sustain a bl e been procured wllh fe d eral agricultural Innovations to government prOviding a subsidy alleviate hunger. 01 25,-. , "state government Tbis year, the wor ld's supported with 10'% adrutionaJ population will hit 7 billion, s ubsi dy apart from 1I1I acco rding to tbe Un ited ' rqandatory 15%." Nations . Reaching this The ltacl ori%41ion unplecedented level of programme, he noled, will go a population density has long way towards Increasing prompted the U.N. Population tractor .denslty in the state, Fund (UNFPA) to launch a ~7 t.hereby reduc:ing labour Billion Actions~ campaign to produc:tivity, reducing drudgery promote Individuals a nd and transforming agriculture org aniza tions that are using Inio mechanized agriculture as successful new techniques for . well as pro vide employment tackling gloha.1 development opportunities.

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Fertilizer: Emir appeals to farmers not to abandon maize for groundnut production ... Farmers appeal to Plateau Govt over non-availability s the farming season rcaches it peak, farmers in A Pankshln and Wase a reas

01 Plateau have appealed to the state government to ensule the availabiliry of fertihser. The farmers in Pankshin during the week told journalists that their crops were turning yellow. -We ha ve cried over the shortage of fertiliser since the beginning of the yeu, but no one seems to be listening," Andrew Yilluk, a farmer i n Pankshin, S41d.. He lamented tbat fa rmers were compelled to pwchase the commodiry Irom middJemen dt "unattordable- prices. Rear:ting to the ollegdtion, Mr. Tanry Oanladi, an agriculturol officer in PonJmbin Local Govemmen t, said that the commodity would soon "'Iood- th.e markets. "This year, f.rmers wbo decided to buy trom their cooperatives, did so at the rate of N3,OOO, as agains t N7,boo per bag in the open market. " I understand witb ·thefarmers ; th is is a pathetic situation. But I bope tbat ~e issue will soon be resolved," be said. Meanwbile, Dan iadl , •

Fadama officer, eJ:ptessed optimUm that the 2011 farming season would be fruitful dnd commended tarmers for uSIng manure to nurture their crops. Another farmer, Simon Gogol, decried th e "eJ:cess\ve po\lticl5ation" of fertiliser distribution. In Wase, the farmer! said that

th.e non_avallabiiiry of fertiliser posed a "huge" threat to tbeir desire for a bumper harvest. AlhaJi Mohammed Ibrahim , the Deputy Chai rman , All Farmers Association of Nigeria, W.ue chapter, noted that farmen; were eagerly awaiting the release 01 the commodity by the government.

Agriculture offers huge opportunities for a planet of 7 · billion

Jigawa State disbures N79m to Fadama users , y-ALIYU DANGIDA

UTSE J igawa lItale _ government bas disbwsed the sum of over N79mlllion to 12 F"dama C o mmunity Associations as p art 01 Its co un terpart funding o f the Fadama III project. The Pennanenl Secretary of the state MInistry of Agricultu re and Natural Resources, Alhaji Mohammed Idri s Dan%omo Sl a ted fb{s at the pre disbursement to Fadama Co mmunity Associations (FeAs) held in DUlSe. Alhajl Idrts Dan%omo stated

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tbat the state government is responding to th.e counterpart funding 01 all eJ: t ernally financed project5 Fadama II and III p r oject inclusive, IFAD_CBARDP, Food Security programme and Sallsakawa Africa Association, adding that amount of public and Sassakawa foundation funds eJ:pended on co u nterpart funrung over the past lour years bas runs into several millions of naira. He also reve.a.\ed that the stale h4lll paqnered lhe Federal governmt:nt and private sector ope rators in th e a. r ea of provision of mec:hanization of

c:halleDges.


VANGUARD, 11 JULY, 2011