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July 20, 2024

FG Aims to Boost Production of Staple Food Commodities With NAGS-AP Programme – Minister 

As part of the commitment to back the declaration of the emergency on food security, the Federal Government of Nigeria secured a loan facility of $134m from the African Development Bank (AfDB) under the Policy Base Operation (PBO) to increase the production and productivity of the agricultural sector to promote the production of staple food crops such as wheat, rice, maize, sorghum, soya beans and cassava during both dry and wet seasons farming.

Speaking during the NAGS-AP stakeholder review and preparatory meeting in Nasarawa,  the Permanent Secretary represented by the Director Planning and Policy Coordination, Mr. Tanimu Ibrahim noted that the Federal Government aims to chart a course forward that ensures robust and sustainable production of staple food commodities across board.

According to him, the goal of the National Agricultural Growth Scheme (NAGS) is to increase total food production to crash the continued rise in the prices of agricultural commodities and make them affordable to the average Nigerians.

He stated further that the project, aside supporting farmers with critical farm inputs for the production of the priority crops, will also provide institutional support for better performances and sustainability particularly in the areas of wheat seeds local production.

“I wish to state that the success we have achieved in the 2023/2024 Dry Season Wheat

Production exercise is a testament to the dedication and hard work of those of us involved in the management of the NAGS-AP Program.

“On the records, we achieved 97% redemption. However, we have come together here, not necessarily to celebrate our seeming success, but also to admit that a whole lot of inimical things have happened downstream.

“We are aware that round tripping has been rife. Farmers, agro-dealers, helpline staff, security agents have all had rogue elements in their ranks who sought to make ‘negative’ profit from this Program.

“This expanded scope reflects our commitment to diversifying our agricultural portfolio and securing a robust and resilient food production system in line with the President Tinubu administration’s resolve to drastically drive down the food inflation realities in the country, while enhancing the livelihoods of our smallholder farmers across the nation.”

Furthermore, he charged the input producers’ fertilizers, seeds, agro-chemicals to ensure that the products they produce meet up with the prescribed set standards in terms of quantity and quality, also the input distributors or agro-dealers to sell only certified and approved products sourced from the registered input producers and the farmers in turn to use and apply the entire inputs given to them in line with the best agronomic practices for maximum productivities.

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