Farming Dynamics

A rural settlement is monotonously characterised by small communities bordered by huge acres of virgin lands and a body of water in miles and in kilometers far ahead into the global sunset. This strength comes in the physicality of the inhabitants of this area, as defined by the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (FMA&RD) production in the Agriculture Promotion Policy (2010-2016) document. The term ‘rural’ in the real sense of it is a process in the making and sustenance of the urban area ranging from food production to the harnessing of the many potentials to those reaping having sowed. This was a point of interest for a counsel with strong passion for agriculture during my conversation with him, Casmir Okeke.

He observed that rural development entails domestic food production of commodities such as wheat, maize, rice, fish, poultry and sugar. Some of these industries are being harnessed and transformed into international export produce with a certain high standard that can compete at any level in the world economy. The Dangote Group in Nigeria has impacted rural development in the field of sugar by imploring the natural juice drawn out from canes, a huge embodiment that the global African sector has huge stakes to rely on. This is because the Nigerian soil is blessed with fertility leading to abundance in harvest, except in extreme cases. The country’s land is fertile enough on the east, west, north and south parts to grow every kind of domestic related crop.

Rural farming of maize comes with the favourable conditions that see the ability of all kinds of specie breed that further thrives even in the driest of land and heatwave topography across Africa, as seen in the Maize pyramids in Kano, Borno, Lower Juba, Lower Shebelle, Middle Shebelle and Hiran regions in Somalia, Cameron highlands and the plains in the South. Its universality canvass is the most sort after agricultural product that could pass for Corn ethanol, animal feed for the livestock in both the poultry and husbandry plot, corn starch and corn syrup, among others. Plant production in recent years has surpassed the production of other popular products like wheat, rice and millet with a 82.9% ratio. This is also due to its multi-purpose nature and the importance of this other sub produce from the grains of corn in rural development globally, the attorney disclosed.

From the farmlands in Europe through to the Congo Basin to the Rivers in West Africa, the green mash of this crop is blossomed by the weather and in countries to the east of Africa, the irrigation system, which sees them as first batch every year with possible head-start before the rains come down, between late February and mid-March as well as during the rainy season in April-October. For majority of maize farmers, after the rainy season, it is hoped that the year’s harvest would come in multiples. No doubt, agriculture is the bedrock of our society. Hence, the citation of our great Pan-Africanist, Kwame Nkrumah, when he spoke that the unity of any nation lies in the works of their hands to produce and while referring to agriculture, it shows it to be all-inclusive and an antidote to underdevelopment, singling out a solution, which can foster unity and togetherness while at the same time, making sure that the famine experienced years before the First World War (1914-1918) and after which the war did not come to light again.

However, there are some variants that come with the end of a planting season in the time of harvest. Hence, there are primarily four variants that can emerge out of a planting season. In Chile, it is recorded to be about 166 species that can emanate from a particular planting season according to the Global Natural Ratings for seedling protection. The hybrid combination of maize seedling produced in Chile has become the best fertile and sporadic genetic seedling in the 21st century, which has passed all multipurpose utilities to have made Chile one of the most effective maize market outside of Africa, which GM seeds have been valued at US$209.07billion and projected to reach 30.24B by the end of 2026.

Okeke concluded by saying that maize farming is more potent in Africa being that Africa is located in the desert with an annual average temperature of about 18.8 Celsius and the annual rainfall is less than 3mm, according to the Library of National Congress of Chile. Therefore, its geographic isolation along withers non-tropical weather and ever-present manageable plant health challenges, which has made this region an attractive location to accelerate maize crop breeding and research programmes in the maize industry. The share of labour force employed in agriculture, as detailed in 2019 by the International Labour Organisation and historical sources show Africa as having the highest percentage in agriculture with Somalia leading the production chart with 80.28%, Chad (75.06%), Niger Republic (72.54%) wither 22.11 million people employed in agriculture in Nigeria, which is a vantage point in the sub-Saharan Africa as far as agricultural management is concerned.