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Agric mechanization will ensure food insecurity in Nigeria – Experts

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Experts have identified industrialized agriculture through mechanization as the only means of ensuring food security in Nigeria. They also urged farmers to embrace the use of modular farming equipment to enhance their productivity and profitability.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the experts stated these in Ibadan on Wednesday at a capacity training for farmers.

NAN also reports that the training was organized by STIHL Germany, in collaboration with  C.Woermann and in partnership with the International Institute of Tropical Agricultural (IITA).

Head, Agribusiness, IITA, Debo Akande, said that Nigeria must adopt the practice of agriculture, as obtainable in countries like Netherlands, Israel, and other developed nations to ensure food security.

“If you see the level of mechanization involved in agriculture in those countries and the innovations, you will agree with me that we have a long way to go in Nigeria.”

“However, I am happy that even though we have a long way to go, we have taken a bold step today by providing modular farming equipment for farmers,” he said.

Akande, who is also the Executive Assistant to Oyo State Governor and Director-General, Oyo State Agribusiness, said that modular farming equipment could deliver the result needed for industrialized agriculture.

According to him, the era of using big machines is gradually fading away, considering the challenges of maintenance and repair of the equipment.

“When I assumed office, I went around the state and concluded that those heavy equipment are no longer needed. But with modular equipment, even if they get spoilt or they are faulty, they can be easily transported from site to where they will be repaired,” he said.

Akande enjoined participants to make judicious use of the knowledge and technology gained from the training in order to be more productive, and efficient.

Also speaking, the Managing Director, C. Woermann Nigeria, Klaus Okunowski, said that the training was aimed at developing the capacity of farmers to use the latest modern farming equipment.

“We are taking knowledge in the latest technology of stihl to the farmers. The equipment is mobile, small, and powerful, and it has been in existence for over 90 years in Germany.”

“We are trying to support farmers to be more efficient and productive by working with more reliable equipment and be able to feed the over 200 million Nigerians,” Okunowski said.

Head, Marketing and Communication, C. Woermann Nigeria, Onome Ayide, said that the technology being made available to farmers was one that could perform different tasks, such as tilling, weeding, application of fertilizers, and spraying.

Some of the participants, who spoke at the occasion, expressed appreciation to the organizers, stating that the training would further enhance their livelihoods.

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