During his visit to the state, Abubakar Kyari, the Minister of Agriculture and Food Security, announced that the federal government will engage in wheat cultivation across 70,000 hectares of land during the dry season in Jigawa.
Kyari shared this information while paying a visit to the emir of Hadejia, Adamu Abubakar-Maje. As part of his visit, the minister also conducted a facility tour at the Malam Alu farm in Birnin Kudu local government area (LGA), as well as a 10-hectare rice farm in Marma, a farming community situated between Kirikasamma and Guri LGAs.
Kyari stated that the purpose of the tour was to conduct a fact-finding mission on behalf of the ministry. The main objective was to assess the readiness of the state and the selected demonstration farms in cultivating high-quality wheat seeds.
“The decision to start the demonstration farms in Jigawa was informed by Governor Umar Namadi’s zeal and commitment towards making the state one of the leading wheat growers in the country,” Kyari said.
“The state allocated 70,000 hectares of land to the ministry for wheat cultivation.”
The program is an initiative undertaken by the federal government in order to address the challenge of ensuring food security, particularly in light of the soaring global price of wheat.
In Nigeria, durum wheat is the second most cultivated species of wheat, following common wheat. It is commonly used in bread-making and is also known as pasta wheat or macaroni wheat due to its versatility. According to the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), in the second quarter (Q2) of 2023, Nigeria spent a total of N208.28 billion on importing durum wheat from countries like Poland, Lithuania, Latvia, Canada, and Russia.
During a tour in Marma village, the Minister engaged with local farmers and announced that the ministry would provide an improved variety of seeds for irrigation activities, aiming to enhance food security programs in the country. This initiative aims to support farmers in increasing their agricultural output and overall agricultural sustainability.
The statement made by the minister indicates that the federal government has taken adequate measures to provide wheat growers with the necessary agricultural tools.
In addition, the ministry has formed a committee to monitor climate change and provide expert guidance to the growers throughout the entire farming process, from planting to harvesting.
The minister also mentioned that President Bola Tinubu is dedicated to improving food security through the implementation of smart agriculture practices.
Furthermore, Abubajar-Maje expressed appreciation to the federal government for selecting Jigawa as the initial state for the wheat program.
The monarch, represented by Usman AbdulAziz, the Galadiman of Hadejia, urged for prompt commencement of the wheat season and emphasized the importance of beginning the planning process for wheat cultivation without delay.
He further emphasized the importance for the farmers who have been chosen to participate in the program to show their gratitude by conducting their operations with utmost honesty.