- 2,000 farmers in Osun state are about to move to the next level of agricultural progress
- An initiative to ensure the farmers maximise profit in their business has commenced
- The initiative is expected to boost the economic potentials of the state and the beneficiaries
About 2,000 farmers in Osun state will benefit from a partnership for the 2021 cocoa planting season.
Legit.ng gathered that the farmers, drawn from the local government areas of the state, will derive from the improved seedlings, access to credit facilities, regular training on how to further improve the quality of produce as well as the required certification to maximise profit.
The initiative is the brainchild of the Osun state government, AFEX Exchange Limited, and the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN.
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Speaking on the collaboration, the deputy governor of Osun, Mr. Benedict Alabi who flagged off the planting season on behalf of Governor Adegboyega Oyetola noted that the partnership will further boost the economic potentials of the state.
“We have the land and the necessary requirements. Our farmers have been sensitised and trained to join our cocoa scheme. We desire to use this to encourage our youths in the state.
“To this end, we are set to empower 2,000 farmers in the state especially in cocoa production to make our state the lead in cocoa production in Nigeria.”
In his remarks, the Chief Executive Officer of AFEX, Mr. Ayodeji Balogun said the company is poised towards boosting the value chain of cocoa production in the country in a bid to optimise opportunities for all stakeholders.
“We are trying to make sure that by next year, we are going to see if we can raise it to over 10,000 farmers who will be able 2 access inputs, benefit from the partnership with us, and so on.”
The representative of the CBN, Mrs. Adebayo expressed the readiness of the apex bank to join hands with AFEX to make the programme hitch-free.
Mrs. Adebayo said;
“I can assure you that the CBN and AFEX in conjunction with the Osun state government are ready to help the farmers. We are poised to support the farmers through development finance.
“We understand finance is the problem of farmers and small-scale industries. This is the main reason why we are here to lend our support especially now that the farming season is commencing.”
The commissioner for trade and investment, Barr. Ukpong Akpabio gave this hint during the graduation ceremony organised for 169 youths who successfully completed training in vegetable enterprise development in the state recently.
In a related development, the Lagos government has hinted that the operation and distribution of the state-owned Lake Rice would soon return to compete against other private brands in the market.
This was revealed by the Lagos state commissioner for agriculture, Abisola Olusanya who said the production of the rice stopped in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.