Commercial farmers in the country have been urged to be more creative in marketing of their agricultural products for such to be acceptable in the international market.
Speaking at a workshop on Agricultural Products Export Promotion Engagement/ Empowerment programme for selected 75 men, women and youths of Ifelodun local government area of Kwara state at ARMTI campus, Ilorin, on Tuesday, the Provost, Federal College of Wildlife Management, New Bussa, Niger State, Dr Titus Ampitan, said that international markets mostly accept agricultural products which value had been added to.
“As you all know, agriculture is the major occupation of the rural population in Nigeria. However, the practice of this all-important profession has not yielded much for farmers as a result of methods employed in carrying out their farming activities. These have hindered them from having maximum benefits from their produce, thereby leading to poverty,” he said.
The agriculture expert also said that agricultural products exportation has become an important instrument, adding that the government is promoting it in order to improve the living standard of peasant farmers through foreign exchange earnings.
He also said that the training workshop hinged on four important aspects of: Wealth creation for the rural populace, poverty reduction, employment generation and value re-orientation.
Also speaking, the programme’s principal consultant, Magic Touch Business Solution Limited, Mr David Babalola, said that agriculture is capable of contributing greatly to the growth of the nation’s economy, provide employment opportunities, export revenue earnings and eradicate poverty, if well promoted.
“But, stagnation in agriculture is the principal factor for poor economic performance, while rising agricultural productivity is the most important factor of successful industrialization”, he said.
Also, executive director of Agricultural and Rural Management Training Institute (ARMTI), Dr Olufemi Oladunni, applauded government’s decision on border closure, saying that agricultural activities had been boosted, “the longer the border closure, the better for Nigerian farmers and youths”, he said.
He said rather than importing, the country should be exporting, urging participants to embrace agripreneurship.
While speaking on behalf of the participants, Mr Olarewaju Oluwaseun, who expressed gratitude, said they would take their training to heart and make good use of it.