A non-governmental organisation, HortiNigeria, in collaboration with International Centre for Research in Agricultural Development (ICRA) East-West Seed (EWS-KT), International fertilizer Development Centre (IFSC) and Royal Tropical Institute (KIT) has is set train no fewer than 60,000 vegetable farmers Kaduna and Kano states.
Speaking at the formal opening ceremony of vegetable sourcing mission held at FABS Hotel in Zaria on Wednesday, one of the component’s lead sector and Business-to-Business linkages coordinator, Mallam Abdullahi Umar said that the 3 day program hosted several participants across the vegetable chain, focusing some of the program’s agribusiness clusters centred around the tomato Jos processing plant with proximity to Igabi local government area of Kaduna state.
He pointed out that the program was designed to support Nigeria in building a sustainable gender and youth inclusive horticulture in Kaduna, Kano, Ogun and Oyo states targeting cabbage, Cucumber, Okro, Onion, Pepper and tomato as well as watermelon value chains.
He said, “The program intends to boost the productivity and income of 60,000 smallholder farmers (50% youth and 40% women).
“In Kaduna and Kano states by introducing eco-efficient agronomic practices, in addition the firm aims to increase acreage under sustainable cultivation by 15,000 hectares and reduce seasonal risks by promoting innovations and crop diversifications to 2,000 entrepreneurial farmers.
“The program will also increase access to finance for 50 small and medium agricultural enterprises and enhance sector coordination, which will facilitate 200 Business-to-Business linkages in all 4 states”
The Coordinator who works with IFCD noted that the group want build a viable horticulture value chain where various participants work together to harness potential.