Experts stress importance of climate smart agriculture

EXPERTS in agriculture extension services have stressed importance of climate smart agriculture practices in Nigeria, especially, with ravaging effects of climate change on global agricultural practices.

Speaking at a one-day sensitization programme for farmers on climate smart agriculture in Ilorin, the North Central coordinator of the

Nigerian Forum for Agricultural Advisory Services (NIFAAS), Professor Israel Oguntade, said that there is a need to re-orientate farmers to plant in a way that will increase their production, their income and enable the nation to have sufficient food, as effect of climate change continued to affect food production.

Professor Oguntade of the Department of Agricultural Extension and Rural Development, University of Ilorin, who attributed biting hunger and poverty in Nigeria to poor farmers’ crop yields, said that the development was due to the current change in the climate and the environment the farmers have found themselves.

“This programme is responding to the problems we are having in Nigeria currently. Our farmers’ production has been going below the recommended research output due to the change in climate and environment they’ve found themselves. So, there’s a need to now re-orientate our farmers to plant in a way that will increase their production, their income, and also enable the nation to have sufficient food, which will make us to get out of hunger and take us out of the poverty level.

“This particular discussion will help us to provide information and knowledge required by farmers to plant their crops at optimal level, using sustainable method, which is not costly. I know you’re familiar with deforestation that’s been going on, with people making coals.”

In other countries, they plant trees eg cacia to replace those they use to make charcoals. But here we use economic trees like locust beans trees, sheer butter trees. People doing this don’t know the value of what they’re destroying. With this discussion we’ll be able to come up with some policy statement that the nation can hold on to and pass down to extension agents and then to the farmers in order to enrich their knowledge and enable them to have a better capacity to produce what Nigeria needs to keep on as a nation”, he said.

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