Nigeria’s National Agriculture Lands Development Authority (NALDA) is sending 200 young farmers to Morocco and Israel for a capacity building trip focusing on crop production and livestock.
The objective of the initiative is to make agriculture more attractive to young people, as well as to enable them to benefit from modern agricultural and agri-food practices in Morocco and Israel.
The 200 beneficiaries received their travel documents at a ceremony held yesterday in Abuja, Nigeria.
During the ceremony, NALDA Executive Secretary Prince Paul Ikonne said the initiative is in line with the National Young Farmers Scheme (NYFS), which Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari launched.
According to the Nigerian government, about 1,000 farmers across Nigeria’s 774 Local Government Areas (LGAs) have benefited from the NYFS. The program created 774,000 job opportunities each year.
Ikonne hopes the capacity building initiative will lead to better food production in Nigeria, enabling the West African country to meet its domestic needs, as well as its exports.
According to Ikonne, sending the young farmers to Morocco and Israel is part of the new “Aggressive Food Production” project in collaboration with the Nigerian Ministry of Education.
NALDA chose Morocco and Israel to host the young farmers because of the expertise of both countries in the areas of crop production and greenhouse management.
Nigeria aims to revive its agricultural sector and reposition it as a pillar of the national economy. “We must produce what we eat and eat what we produce,” Buhari said in a statement in 2016.
NALDA’s main objectives are to empower local farmers, the main drivers of the agricultural industry in Nigeria, as well as to ensure food and fiber security and to diversify Nigeria’s economy.