The IFAD-assisted Value Chain Development Programme (VCDP) has urged cassava and rice farmers to adopt new farming techniques to boost production and enhance the nation’s food security.
Oyesola Oyebanji, the Lead Consultant of IFAD-VCDP, who spoke at the 2018 pre-season training for farmers in Ogun said that the objective was to enhance the skills of cassava and rice farmers, particularly in the area of crop production, processing and marketing.
“The essence of the training is for the farmers to learn new techniques, upgrade their knowledge and skills in good agronomic practices for cassava and rice. It is better for farmers to make use of the opportunities that are now available because the IFAD-VCDP has a six-year life-span,’’ he said.
Oyebanji also urged the participants to practise and share the new knowledge among others, adding that the approach is potent for boosting growth.
Ajisafa Aina, the IFAD-VCDP Agricultural Production Officer noting that the programme aptly felt the pulse of farmers said it would help them take cognizance of business skills including plans and record keeping, and running productive and successful farming enterprises, while boosting food production in the state.
Abidemi Modupe, speaking on “Good Agricultural Practices in Cassava and Rice Production’’ said the handling of cassava stems as well as the cutting and measurement of cassava stems were important in production, stressing that the ideal length of a cassava stem for planting should be between 20 and 25 centimetres.
On rice farming, Modupe said that rice could be cultivated in fertile, wet lowlands with clay content, adding that rice farmers must, however, be mindful of factors such as choice of land, rice seeds and nursery establishment.