Next year, in Nigeria, there will inevitably be a shortage of rice, which will lead to price increases if farmers do not take appropriate measures to replace goods after the recent floods in some states, including Kebbi, Jigawa, Anambra and Kogi, which destroyed agricultural land.
Nigeria declared a nationwide disaster last month after severe flooding in 10 states, where about 100 people died, which was described by the country's National Agency for Emergency Situations (NEMA) as the worst flooding in six years.
Some rice-producing countries, in collaboration with the private sector, have actively invested in local production as part of their strategic response to the Nigerian government’s desire to achieve rice self-sufficiency, diversify the economy and create jobs by 2020.
This investment is threatened by floods that have washed rice farms across the country.
Rice consumption in Nigeria has grown over the past two to three decades, and this has raised its profile as one of the leading products in the country. Over the years, its imports from Thailand, Indonesia, and other Southeast Asian countries left the drainage pipe in foreign exchange reserves in Nigeria, forcing the government to ban its imports and conduct massive local agriculture.
The average price of one kilogram of imported high-quality rice increased by 1.14 percent compared to the previous month, to N375.02 in August from N370.79 in July and decreased by -2.43 percent compared to the previous year, National Statistics Bureau data showed.
Speaking about this, Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Audu Ogbe said that the flood that affected some large rice-producing countries, including Kebbi, Jigawa, Anambra and Kogi, predicts the risk of rice shortages in the country if it is not considered.
Ogbeh, who launched the Molecular Fund of the Agricultural Seed Council (NASC) in memory of the seed fair in 2018 and the farmer's field day, on Thursday in Abuja, advised farmers to use water that leaves flooding to transplant rice to avoid crop shortages Next year.
Ogbe said: “We have to find a way to reach out to farmers who have lost their crops, because in places like Jigava, Kebbi, Anambra and Kogi, many farmers have lost everything they planted.
“New rice varieties are produced at the National Council for Agricultural Seeds, Faro 66 and 67, which are tolerant to floods, we hope to get them in the field in large numbers so that farmers can plant in the near future.
“We also hope that as soon as the rain recedes, we urge farmers to replant, so that residual moisture in the soil plus irrigation can give up another crop, perhaps by the end of December or early January, otherwise we may have serious problems for millet, rice, maize and sorghum, ”Afgbe feared.
For example, about 20 percent of the 110 hectares of rice fields on the Leventis farm in Agenebode, Edo, were washed away by the flood. It was believed that a farm grown by farmers with the support of the state government as part of the FADAMA III funding project was flooded with floods from the Niger.
At least 21,000 hectares (51,892 acres) with 168,000 metric tons of uncollected rice were also washed away last month in Kebbi, one of the major developing countries in rice production in Nigeria.
Mohammed Sahabi, state chairman of the Rice Farmers Association of Nigeria (RIFAN), said similar damage was reported by farmers in three other northern states, namely Niger, Kano and Katsina.
Similarly, about 7,000 registered members of the RIFAN in the state of Adamawa are said to estimate the extent of damage on their farms by floods that fell into the state. With some agricultural land in various areas of local government, especially on the banks of the Benu River, submerged in water, the Association stressed that the previously predicted bumper crop in the state was under threat.
Reported by Shalom Anthony