Search NaijaAgroNet

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

FG dismantles bottlenecks to seed industry growth

The Federal Government of Nigeria has assured that it will dismantle all bottlenecks which stand in the way of growth of the seed industry in Nigeria, NaijaAgroNet reports.

This disclosure was made recently by the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Mr. Sonny Echono, at the launch of the Nigerian Chapter of the Alliance for Seed Industry in West Africa (ASIWA) in Abuja.

Echono, NaijaAgroNet gathered, said that efforts must be made to identify relevant issues and remove all bottlenecks to the smooth growth of the seed sector in order to make quality seeds available to farmers.

He disclosed that the Federal Government was planning to train 100 National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) members to ensure production and marketing of good quality seeds by various seed producers.

The permanent secretary said that the Federal Government had also sanctioned by de-listing some seed companies, who supplied adulterated and poor quality seeds to farmers, NaijaAgroNet learnt.

 “To achieve the laudable objectives particularly in the seed sector, it is imperative that the National Agricultural Seed Council (NASC) as the government agency responsible for seed industry development must be fully supported to perform. NASC must come out with specific recommendations, to create a sound level, sustainable dissemination and strategies for improved crops to resource poor farmers in the country,” Echono stated.

For the country to achieve the objectives of the Agricultural Transformation Agenda launched in 2011, he said, it was necessary to provide the right policy to protect seed production, NaijaAgroNet learnt.

Cyriacus Nnaji/ GEE

... Linking agrobiz, sustainable environs, people & technology

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Need for mountain soils conservation harped

There is now additional impetus in the effort to ensure that the world mountain soils, which are the fragile foundations of ecosystems that ultimately provide water for more than half the world's population, are preserved, reports NaijaAgroNet.

This move was enhanced with the publication of a new FAO book  which offers technical insights on the sustainable management of mountain soils, which are home to a vast array of human activities ranging from quinoa cultivation in the Andes through European ski resorts to the collection of medicinal plants in Tajikistan's "roof of the world" Pamir range.

ErmannoZanini, an expert on glaciers and natural risks and professor at the University of Turin said, the book  aims to "promote the sustainable management of mountain soils on behalf of mountain peoples - who are often marginalized, not included in decision-making processes and development programmes, and increasingly affected by soil-related disasters."

"Understanding Mountain Soils," published by FAO with the Mountain Partnership Secretariat, the Global Soil Partnership and the University of Turin, contains a host of case studies from around the world covering human, productive and geological issues, NaijaAgroNet gathered.

"Mountain soils are particularly susceptible to climate change, deforestation, unsustainable farming practices and resource extraction methods that affect their fertility, trigger land degradation, desertification and disasters such as floods and landslides, leading to poverty," FAO Director-General Jose Graziano da Silva writes in the preface to the volume.

The book, NaijaAgroNet discovered revealed the main features of mountain soil systems, their environmental, economic and social values, the threats they are facing and their cultural heritage. Case studies provided by Mountain Partnership members include how shade-grown coffee improves soil conservation, the surprising carbon storage powers of the windblown Scottish coastline, the viability of shifting cultivation in Bangladesh's Chittagong Hill Tracts, and unusual peat bogs in Lesotho.

Cyriacus Nnaji/ GEE

... Linking agrobiz, sustainable environs, people & technology