Nigeria is likely to witness a serious shortfall in Soybeans production this year with the farmers’ association projecting output may be down to 50 percent.
They had earlier projected to produce one million bags (100kg per bag) this season but unfortunately, because of COVID-19, most farmers could not get access to the CBN Anchor Borrowers’ loan and that has reduced the population of farmers to cultivate soybeans. This is going to affect production by almost 50%, the National President of the soybeans farmers association, Professor Nafiu Abdul, said.
This Is certainly going to affect the poultry feed industry, which uses the crop as the main ingredient in feed production- a situation that will force prices up.
Maize and soybeans are the major ingredients of the poultry feeds, and already maize farmers too, are forecasting downward trend due to COVID-19 pandemic.
Poultry farmers are already lamenting the scarcity of maize for the production of feeds across the country.
Some farmers said that it was unfortunate that soybeans is always planted late in the season beginning from the second week of June and in some places even at the beginning of August.
Dr Nafiu said the farmers were been apprehensive of the so many things that are happening now in the country because of the COVID -19 especially because the cost of inputs was going very high- fertiliser been sold in some locations at more than N10,000, which is double what it was sold last year.
The farmers have also been facing serious problems of fluctuation in the price of produce in the market as a result of this disease, an agric expert, Mojifenwa Ifeoluwa, said.
The reason, according to him, is that when farmers harvest their produce, they tend to keep it till the prices go up a little in order to make a profit from what they invested in their farms.
But as a result of this COVID -19, the market is not very good. The price of soybean has remained static and in most some places farmers are experiencing losses from what they invested in the farm during the last season, he added.