The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), says it has supported the cultivation of 2,000 hectares out-grower farms in Borno to produce improved variety seedlings and accelerate paddy rice production.
The seeds nurseries were established at Dusuman and Zabalmari villages in Konduga Local Government Area of Borno, under the apex bank’s Anchor Borrower scheme.
Anchor Borrower programme is a critical component of the Federal Government’s agriculture transformation agenda designed to encourage crop production and processing to achieve self-sufficiency.
It is also aimed at enhancing farmers’ access to fertilisers, seeds, and inputs; promote farmer enterprising skills, value addition and create market for the produce.
Mr Mahmood Nyako, the Head of Development Finance Office (DFO) of the CBN Office in Maiduguri, made the disclosure during a field inspection of the seeds nursery in Konduga.
“We inspected the seed nursery with farmers, anchor clients and extension personnel accredited by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).
“The extension experts advised us to commence distribution of the seedlings for transplanting by next week in order to achieve higher yields at harvest.
“They also sensitised farmers on tillage, spacing, proper application of chemicals and other farming skills,” he said.
Nyako added that the bank had distributed fertilisers, seeds and chemicals to farmers through the designated anchor clients, to boost paddy rice, maize, cotton and sorghum production in the state.
Alhaji Abba Kale, the Manager of Kalef Ventures, an anchor consultant, disclosed that the seedlings would be distributed to 5, 000 registered farmers in Konduga and Jere Local Government Areas of the state.
Kale explained that the company provided technical services to the anchor clients, who distributed inputs and money for farm labour activities to the benefiting farmers.
“We set up a modern mill in the community to mop up grain produced by farmers, process and package it for local consumption and export.”