The International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) has expressed its willingness and readiness to expand existing areas of collaboration with the Sasakawa Global 2000 (SG 2000) to boost agricultural production in the country.
Dr Lucky Omoigui, a Seed Systems Specialist at the Institute, gave the assurance when two Executive Directors of SG 2000 from Japan visited the institute on Sunday in Kano.
The SG 2000 programmes had improved the productivity and profitability of small holder farmers by encouraging the adoption of higher-yielding varieties and enhanced production practices.
Omoigui said expanding the areas of collaboration between the two organisations would not only boost food production but would go along way in enhancing the socio-economic condition of the small holder farmers in the country.
“We have collaborated on several projects but there is need for us to look for more areas of partnership because our collective effort is geared toward improving the lives of farmers,” he said.
The Seed Systems Specialist stressed the need for the two organisations to continue to partner with each other in order to enable farmers to benefit from the new improved seed varieties and farming technologies introduced by the organisations.
Earlier in her remark, Executive Director, SG 2000, Mrs Fumiko Iseki, expressed concern over the poor community involment, especially in the distribution of high yield seeds to farmers in the country.
She called for the sustenance of the existing partnership between the two organisations for the promotion of agriculture in Nigeria and Africa.
Since it was established, the SG 2000 focused its resources on four African countries-Ethopia, Nigeria, Mali and Uganda.
The SG 2000 team had paid similar visit to the Country Representative of International Crops Research Institute for Semi-Arid Tropics, Dr Hakeem Ajeigbe.