Experts in the agriculture sector have revealed that over N16 billion can be saved annually through the reduction in the application of insecticide by farmers.
One of the experts, Prof. Mohammad Ishiaku, disclosed to Saturday Telegraph that the use of insecticide by farmers in Nigeria has caused more problems than solution due to limited knowledge.
Ishiyaku, who is a lecturer in the Department of Plant Science, Institute of Agriculture Research, Ahmadu Bello University, said Nigeria should adopt biotechnology as a tool to ensure food security and protect the environment.
He said: “Reduction of insecticide spray requirement from 6-8 litre per hectare to two to three litres per hectare at the cost of N1,200 per litre, which totals N54,000 reduction in production cost per hectare with PBR Cowpea, that will make Nigeria save up to N16,200,000,000 annually.”
He stated that with the help of biotechnology, scientists have developed some insect- resistant crops which the farmers can take advantage of as it guarantees increased yield as well as save the environment from degradation.
According to him, such crops include the biotechnology cowpea, bio-fortified sorghum and nitrogen use, water-use and salt tolerant (NEWEST) rice.
Other benefits which the university’s don said accrue from the use of biotechnology crops are reduced human health risk and more productive farming population.