Cassava farmers can get 50 tonnes per hectare, says FECA

CassavaIn the bid to expedite agricultural revolution in Nigeria, the Provost of Federal College of Agriculture, Akure, Dr. Adeola Odedina, has said that cassava farmers in the country could yield 50 to 60 tonnes per hectare in their plantation to maximise their profit.

Odedina, who stated this in Akure during the Cassava Adding Value for Africa Phase II (CAVA II) Farmers’ Field Day on cassava production enterprise, affirmed the importance of the technicalities involved to maximally achieve the desired result.

He said that the national average yield is about eight to 10 tonnes per hectare and farmers can obtain up to 20 to 25 tonnes per hectare if trained.

Demonstrating the effects of a well-managed cassava production on FECA farm, he said: “Farmers and investors will witness the unprecedented yield increase in cassava of up to 50-60 tonnes/hectare, achieved through crop management options that are within the reach of farmers, including small holders.

“It is by following steps that lead to this high yield at low cost that young people can embrace agriculture. This has to be demonstrated, and this is the hallmark of today’s event: demonstrating the profitability of cassava production enterprise so that youths and investors can take up to 1,000, 000 value chain job opportunities in cassava production enterprise in Nigeria.”

Odedina appealed for extension of the national fund for tertiary institutions, TETFUND, to colleges of agriculture in the country so that they can have the wherewithal to train the students and effectively discharge their services to over 80 per cent of extension agents, farmers and advisers in the sector.

The Project Director of the Cassava Adding Value for Africa, Prof. Kolawole Adebayo, also representing International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA), said the campaign is ongoing in five African countries namely: Nigeria, Ghana, Tanzania, Malawi and Uganda, to support at least 200,000 farmers to sell up to 2,000,000 metric tonnes of fresh cassava root between 2014 to 2019.

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