IAR new technology raises hope of maize sufficiency in Nigeria | The Guardian Nigeria News


Effort of Federal government to eliminate impediments crippling food security in Nigeria has received boost with the new maize technology released by Institute for Agricultural Research, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria.

Besides the sufficiency, the new technology will bridge the gap of about five million metric tons of maize shortage in Nigeria and drastically reduce huge foreign exchange being expended annually on importation of the crop.

It is estimated that Nigeria presently produces less than 15 million metric tons of maize per hectare as opposed to between 19 and 20 million metric tons per hectare the nation requires to meet its consumption and industrial needs.

Addressing journalists during a field demonstration of the hybrid quality technology tagged, “Seeing is Believing” with farmers at Karaye town, Karaye local government area of Kano state, principal investigator of Tela Maize, Professor Rabiu Adamu, disclosed that the new technology was essentially modified to solve challenge of infestation on maize.

Critical among the infestation, Professor Adamu said include fall i, a dangerous disease that destroys farmers production by no less 50 percent marginal growth while limiting farmers potential bomber harvest.

Professor Adamu explained that the new technology is configured to resist fall army-worm infestation thereby reducing farmers cost on pesticides application as well as nurtured for early maturity of less than 90 days production.

“Fall army-worm is a major challenge to maize production in Nigeria and the new technology is designed to resist the infestation of the pest on the crop and rather grow well even with the presence of any pest. Growing this technology, farmers will save about 50 percent cost of products and it is also early mature improved maize that will not take more than 90 days from the day of planting to harvest”, Professor Adamu noted.

The Tela maize principal investigator emphasized that the essence of the “Seeing is Believing” field day is to showcase the result of the demonstration of the new technology to farmers in Karaye.

According to him, “We have carried out the technology demonstration at 11 sites across the North, South and Eastern part of the country.And across the centres we have received amazing and warm reception of farmers who are only waiting for the final release of the seed for huge production. With this hybrid, we have recorded an average yield of 6.9 tons per hectares meaning that farmers can get up to 69 or 70 bags of maize per hectare as opposed to maximum 4 to 5 tons with the conventional high breed.

“With this technology, our local production is going to be enlarged beyond the current less than 15 million meteic tons per annual as opposed to 19 to 20 million metric tons needed per annual. It is hope that with this technology, the country will overcome the shortage of four to five million MT in the next three years”, Professor Adamu noted.

On his part, the Executive Director, Institute of Agriculture Research, Prof. Ado Adamu Yusuf, said that beyond the hybrid maize, the institute has released 69 variety of technologies on various crops to improve food security. He however decried the attitude of farmers who had failed to embrace the use of improved varieties.

Prof. Yusuf reminded that improved variety are modified to reduce cost of production, improve high yield, resistance to fall army and drought tolerant while increasing food production and food sufficiency in the overall.

Professor Yusuf hinted the institute has contributed significantly to agricultural research and development especially in the areas of genetic improvement crops.

“ARI has developed 69 varieties of maize. More than 50 varieties of sorghum, we have released 21 varieties of cowpea, groundnut about 29 varieties of groundnut, 17 varieties of cotton and four varieties of Sunflower. So the institute has been doing a lot.

“Unfortunately you move around the farmers’ field, you will realize that they continue to use the same variety and you will discover that they continue to use the same variety that they have been using over the years. And they are not getting the best out of the variety.”

Some of the farmers at the occasion expressed satisfaction with the progressive outcome of the technology on the demonstration plots while pledging commitment to adopt the hybrid after finally release to boost their production.


Source link

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top