Nigerian government to revive groundnut farming in Kaduna

groundnutGroundnut is the fifth most widely grown crop in Africa behind maize, sorghum, millet and cassava. (Image source: wikimedia)The Nigerian government and Kaduna state government have announced a joint initiative to improve groundnut farming in the state

Tijjani Isiyaku, state director of Agricultural Transformation Agenda (ATA), said that the federal government and Kaduna state government were exploring the viability of dry season groundnut farming to achieve better groundnut production. He said that the major challenge was inadequate seeds to meet the demand of farmers.

According to the joint initiative, the federal government will ensure provision for improved variety of seeds in the state. Through the ATA, the Ministry has also introduced a groundnut value chain in order to revive its production in the country.

Isiyaku said, “A lot of farmers are interested in the new variety of seeds. Different kind of groundnut seeds where distributed to farmers for trial on their farms in July 2014. We went round the farms and we discovered that the trials were successful. Just after two months of trails, the farmers have started booking the seeds.”

ATA will work towards reviving the abandoned groundnut pyramid period of the country. It will also support farmers with other farming inputs such as fertiliser at a subsidised rate, Isiyaku noted.

Groundnut pyramids were pyramid-like structures made from groundnut sacks built in northern Nigeria. In the 1960s and 70s, as production in Nigeria shifted from agriculture to oil, the groundnut pyramids disappeared.

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