Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo says young people are embracing agriculture because of technology.
Osinbajo spoke during the presidential panel discussion session of the African Green Revolution Forum which held in Accra, Ghana, on Wednesday.
The theme of the forum was “Grow Digital: Leveraging Digital Transformation to Drive Sustainable Food Systems in Africa.”.
President Nana Akufo-Addo of Ghana, Edouard Ngirente, prime minister of Rwanda, and Josefa Sacko, Africa Union (AU) commissioner for rural economy and agriculture, were also in attendance.
The vice -president described agriculture as one of the largest employers of labour in Nigeria.
He said more young people in the country are now interested in farming because of the impact of technology.
“With respect to the place of agriculture in our economy, it is central, ” Osinbajo said.
“But speaking on how we have absorbed digital technology, one of the most unique features of what digital technology has done is that it has brought in a large number of young people into agriculture.
“Today many young people are going into agriculture, by using digital technology. Most of the digital platforms that we have that service the agricultural sector are owned by young people who increasingly see the possibilities in agriculture.
“Aside from the various uses of technology for purposes of tracking movement of farm products, extension services and other advantages, one of the most important advantage is the fact that young people are now very interested in agriculture.
“They are investing in agriculture and they are looking at the innumerable possibilities in the entire agro-allied valued chain.”
According to the vice-president, several tech companies are already redefining the agricultural space in Nigeria.
He identified collaboration as one of the benefits of digital technology.
“What we found is that there is far more collaboration than before, and there is far more transparency; you can see practically everything and everyone who is connected one way or the other. And people learn faster because of a lot of collaboration, ” he said.
“Some companies are linking investors to farmers, and it is so easy to find out what they are doing by simply going to their website.
“The way it is going, frankly, I can’t see how it will not completely revolutionalise agriculture because practically everywhere that digital technology has touched; it completely revolutionalised.
“And I don’t think we have a choice. What we’re going to see is that, by and large, digital technology is simply going to change the face of agriculture in Africa.’’