Despite the success recorded in the agricultural sector in 2021, Babban Gona, a social enterprise organisation that provides support for smallholder farmers in Nigeria to become more profitable, has outlined key areas farmers and should be interested in this year.
Babban Gona, which means “big farm”, partly owned by the farmers it serves, noted that despite the gains of last year there was more to be done to strengthen the agricultural industry.
The organisation noted that, “The world’s population is expected to increase by 1.09 per cent annually; which means an increase in the rate of food consumption. By 2050 it is expected that the world’s population would be over nine billion, meaning that there will need for a significant increase in agricultural production required to meet this demand. To remain productive and address relevant needs, industries like agriculture must leverage the following emerging trends.”
Increased adoption of Artificial Intelligence (AI)
AI is changing the way farmers go about their day-to-day activities. The use of soil and plant health monitoring system will enable farmers monitor their farms more efficiently, particularly farms sitting on a large piece of land. More farmers are expected to be open to adopting this technology in 2022.
Just as the adoption of AI is expected to increase, so too is the use of modern technology for agricultural activities. One of the major hindrances to agricultural productivity in Nigeria is the use of traditional tools for farming activities. However, farmers are beginning to realise that investing in the use of agricultural technology (agritech) such as mechanised threshers, tractors, automated irrigation, agricultural drones and more will help upscale their agribusiness.
Attracting talent through agritech
More talents are expected to join the agricultural sector in 2022 from other sectors due to the increasing importance of agricultural technology. The growing influence of agritech is also expected to improve access to funding opportunities, farm inputs, technological innovations and digital solutions in the agricultural sector.
Increased use of climate-friendly practices
The impacts of climate change such as flooding, erosion, heat waves and more will affect crop yield, soil nutrition, the nutritional quality of major cereals and livestock productivity.
Farmers are expected to embrace more climate-friendly agricultural practices in 2022 such as crop rotation, planting cover crops, mulching, etc., in order to ensure they are able to maximise their agricultural outputs.