Kebbi ‘can deliver’ 50% of Nigeria’s rice needs

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Kebbi can deliver 50 percent of Nigeria’s rice requirements with continuous support of the federal government’s anchor borrowers Pprogramme, according to Garba Dandiga, state commissioner for agriculture.

Dandiga disclosed this while conducting a team of journalists on an inspection of the 50 km by 20 km FADAMA rice plantation in Suru.

He said 16 local government areas were in serious rice production in the state and millions of youths and retirees were engaging in rice farming accross the state.

Specifically, the commissioner said with expectations of bounty harvest in 2018, the Suru Fadama farms will turn out 2.5 million tonnes of paddy.

He said in 2017, 1.5 million tonnes of paddy were harvested from the Suru farms.

Dandiga said there were eight bigger paddy farms across the state supported with value chains of mills and markets.

He said Suru is an organised rice value chain with method that ensures that every bag and lorry load of paddy out of the place are recorded.

The commissioner said that in order to boost production, the government recently procured 100 tractors, 300 power tillers, 300 thrashers and 200 reapers to support the farmers.

He said the state government was giving the tractors at subsidised rate upon a part payment by interested farmers who would be given time to pay the balance in instalment.

Dandiga commended the federal government for its fertiliser policy which he said were readily available to farmers at a cheaper rate of N5,500 per bag compared to N9000 price in the open market.