Stakeholders in the agricultural sector have advocated for the use of technology and innovation in the sector to boost farmer productivity.
They said so during the Agric Workshop organized by the Nigerian-British Chamber of Commerce (NBCC) held yesterday in Lagos, on the theme: “Leveraging Technology and Digital Transformation in the agriculture “.
NBCC’s Chairman, Agric and Export Trade Group, Dr Olusola Obabori said: “Any business without leveraging technology works in the past. That’s why we’re here today to look at the use of technology to boost agricultural production.
He added that with the use of technology, it will increase production and give the best practices in the world, which will result in more profit.
The Permanent Secretary of the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Dr. Ernest Umakhihe, said the Nigerian agricultural sector has the potential to drive economic growth and create wealth, due to viable agro-ecological zones. of the country, strong value chains and a young population. , which can be used to explore and undertake a diversified agribusiness.
He added that over time, agriculture has played a long-standing role in Nigeria’s economy and currently contributes the most to overall GDP, saying that today it accounts for 25% of Nigeria’s GDP. and remained resilient in the face of recent economic downturns and exogenous forces. shocks.
According to Umakhihe, as part of the repositioning of the agricultural sector, the presidency signed a priority pact with the ministry that is captured; the national agricultural research system aimed at strengthening relevant research and training institutions towards sector-aligned, demand-driven and innovative technology, among others.
He noted that continued local and foreign collaborations and partnership between state and non-state actors remain the backbone of creating conducive business conditions, increasing private sector participation in the economy, expanding commodity value chain activities and increasing the contribution of agricultural production to the country’s gross domestic product. .
CEO of Eresoft Limited and Ere Aeronautics Limited, Ebikekeme Ere, said the country’s population is expected to double by 2050 as demand for food soars, noting agriculture is still very food intensive, yield per acre can vary by 500% in a single field, fertilizer prices are increasing every year, the potential for crop yield increases by 50-60%, and crop diseases are on the rise due to lack of mitigation.