At the ThriveAgric 2022 conference, stakeholders encouraged the use of technologies to support agricultural production to ensure food security.
ThriveAgric organized the conference entitled “Technology Leverage for Sustainable Agricultural Expansion: Perspectives of Smallholder Farmers” to bring together various stakeholders in the agriculture sector to explore ways to improve agriculture.
The founder of ThriveAfrica, Mr. Ayodeji Arikawe, said the event was aimed at finding ways to increase food production.
He said: “Therefore, part of this year’s conference is mainly to bring together stakeholders, farmers, growers and other partners to take stock of what happened in the year and plan for the coming year.
“This year, we worked with more than 450,000 farmers, giving them access to finance and markets, and using technology to support their growth.”
Arikawe said that while it was unfortunate that many farmers were affected by the flood, he hoped that there would be a plan to help farmers recover from their losses.
ThriveAgric’s Head of Partnerships, Ms. Samira Bello, said the meeting was an important milestone in the organization’s partnership with the mall.
Bello said the group previously worked with 50,000 smallholder farmers in partnership with the trade center.
He said: “To date, we have worked with over 60,000 smallholder farmers and achieved over 100% of our target.
“This meeting is like a closing meeting of the project so that we can project what the next year should be, not only for us, but also for all the stakeholders of the agricultural sector.
“It’s how should they use technology to sustain smallholder farmers and make Africa self-sufficient?”
That’s why this conference was organized to bring together people in the agriculture sector, Bello said, adding, “Whether it’s input suppliers, supporters, youth, agribusinesses like TrivAgric.
He said the organization is trying to be a key player for all stakeholders in the industry to come together and work together to create future projects.
A Humanitarian Adviser, Catholic Charitas Foundation of Nigeria, Mr. Fuma Alhassan, called on the Federal Government to invest adequately in the agricultural sector and publicize it.
This will help more farmers leverage technology to increase their output, Alhassan said.
He said: “Some of these technologies are alien to our rural farmers, so the government should be very sensitive to mobilize farmers to use the technology.
“Fortunately for us, the government is working on education through the National Extension Agency and even the extension unit of the Federal Ministry of Agriculture.”
Alhassan said there could be technology that could tell farmers whether to predict, when to plant, when to apply fertilizer, and even how to prepare crops and rotate crops.
He said, “Stakeholders were therefore looking at how to increase the amount of land available for farmers to grow their crops and whether the technology introduced could give them the support they want.”
He, however, urged the government to invest, saying that it was a very difficult task to introduce farmers to the technology as it required huge resources to adopt this technology-based agriculture.
The CEO of Agriarche, Mrs. Deina Mayaki, said that the problems identified at the conference are common problems.
Mayaki said: “It showed that the stakeholders were not working in isolation, but were actually solving problems that many key stakeholders were looking for solutions for.
“So, it’s an eye-opener and it’s very encouraging to me to see that these are common problems, universal problems that need to be addressed.
“There are many technological solutions, but how to implement them is a challenge, so the huge capacity of funding for network development and development are just a few of the things I have learned here.”(NAN)