By Nosa Akenzua, Asaba
Mr Richard Asenime, Delta Chairman, All Farmers Association of Nigeria (AFAN), has said that it was madness for Nigerians to import frozen poultry products (Chicken)
Asenime, stated this in an interview with newsmen on at the in Asaba.
He argued that the it was a waste of foreign exchange, misdirected demand and expenditure for Nigerians to continue to import frozen chickens.
He said, “We don’t need to import poultry products in Nigeria, I watch how the customs confiscate, destroy and bury cartons of imported poultry products.
“I wonder how long these have been in transit and if they have not outlived their usefulness before been dumped in Nigeria.
“And I said it is madness, what are we importing poultry for, it is simple and cheap to produce; anybody or household can produce, process, package and frozen depending on the quantity using a deep freezer”.
The AFAN boss also said that farmers in the state would be engaging in dry season farming and have selected three crops; rice, maize and veritable for the period.
He said that the association had made demands on the government to assist farmers with irrigation facilities and other inputs and had expressed hope that their demand would be met.
He said that with the state support, the benefitting farmers may work in clusters to enjoy the irrigation facilities (Water Boreholes) in the various locations as may be directed by government.
According to him, the crops are rice, vegetables and maize and that participating farmers have already commenced with land preparations.
“His excellency, Gov. Ifeanyi Okowa has approved that the state key into dry season farming.
“So, in regards to that, we are collaborating with the State Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resources and we have made the necessary information available to them.
“With the dry season here, it is expected that the ministry will flag-off the activity because we told them that some of our farmers will be engaging in dry season rice, vegetable and maize farming.
“Our farmers should be patient, though they can do their own individual farms but as soon as the government approves our proposals and it becomes fruitful, we shall group them into cluster at various locations to cultivate rice, maize and vegetables”.
He hailed the Federal Government ban on importation of rice, adding that farmers in the country have the potential to produce rice for local consumption and for export if given the need support.
He called on Federal Government to strengthen the support to farmers and create access to funding to ease the stress associated with farming in the country.
“Today, rice farming have received a boosts, we now have off- takers who help to clear the produce and process them for consumption; all these and more are making rice farmers happy now.
“The local rice is everywhere but we need a little fine – tuning to make it better and with government support, production will increase and the pricing will definitely be accommodating when the rice market is stabilised.
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