The Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Dr Mohammad Abubakar, has disclosed that the Federal Government has commenced the deployment of Agro-Rangers across the country to improve security on farms.
The minister disclosed this at a news conference on flooding impact on food security in Abuja on Tuesday.
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He said the deployment was part of the on-going activities by the ministry with relevant government agencies to increase food production in the country.
“The Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development is collaborating with the Ministry of Interior to improve security on farms through the deployment of Agro-Rangers across the country,” he said. Abubakar said that the Federal Government had also restocked the Strategic Food Reserve with 200,000MT (metric tonnes) of assorted food commodities.
He listed other ongoing activities by the ministry to include construction and rehabilitation of Mini-Earth Dams and Water, Harvesting Structures to store excess rain water for dry season farming and fisheries in the front-line states.
“This will increase water availability for domestic and agricultural use.
“It will equally reduce the negative impact of climate change, mitigate farmers-herders conflict and increase food production in the country,” he said.
The minister said that Federal Government had distributed mobile multipurpose grain dryers to cluster farmers, to reduce post-harvest losses in the 774 Local Government Areas in Nigeria.
Abubakar said government also made provision of livestock production facilities, including pasture fields, water facilities, animal handling and feed processing hubs.
“Also government is training pastoralists within grazing reserves to adopt Good Animal Husbandry Practices for increased production and reduction in crop farmer and herder conflicts. He said that government had completed 10 integrated rice mills nationwide to boost rice processing.
“Also, approval of five years tax break as an incentive to encourage private investments in the agricultural sector and increased food production, processing and marketing,” he said.
On what the ministry is doing to tackle increase in food prices, Abubakar said that the Federal Government was looking inwards to Improve on organic fertilisers.
“We are doing something, we are looking at other areas that we can import the things that we need.
“A country no matter how agriculture sufficient you are, you will still import.
“Even, America that is the giant of agriculture still imports certain things,” he said.