Government moves against $9 billion yearly grains value chain loss.
The Nigerian Incentive-Based Risk Sharing System for Agricultural Lending (NIRSAL) has commissioned local and international experts to turn around the nation’s $9 yearly grains value chain loss. Consequently, the panel is to seek efficient and sustainable solutions to improved seed output and processing.
To this end, NIRSAL yesterday in Abuja hosted a stakeholders’ roundtable on seed and grain processing technology that drew participants from the academia, private and public sectors.
Among the dignitaries were Didier Sanon of PETKUS GmBworld, Germany; Director General of the National Agricultural Seed Council (NASC), Dr. Philip Olusegun Ojo, and President, Seed Entrepreneurs Association of Nigeria(SEEDAN), Mr. Olafere Richards.
The Managing Director/CEO of NIRSAL, Mr. Aliyu Abdulhameed, said the focus of the strategic session was on the key challenges limiting the financial viability of the cereal and legume value chains in Nigeria, which usually occur at the seed input and grain output stages.
He added that the gathering was also to offer a path to the low yield problems encountered by farmers in the use of certified hybrid seeds.
Abdulhameed noted: ” These negative factors contribute significantly to Nigeria’s annual $9 billion worth of post-harvest losses which, in turn, have led to lower capacity to service the consumer, industrial and export grain markets, lower returns to the farmer, inability to fulfill financial obligations or repay loans as well as sustained poverty and impoverishment.”
The NIRSAL boss said to de-risk the seeds industry and make it attractive to money deposit banks, the agency had defrayed the N4 billion indebtedness of SEEDAN members.
He restated that the main interest of the event was to make agriculture attractive to the financial sector in line with NIRSAL’s core mandate.