NASC to set up seed market to check poor quality seed

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The National Agricultural Seed Council (NASC) says the council will soon set up a modern seed market to check the poor quality of seeds in the country.

Dr Philip Ojo, NASC Director General, made this known in an interview with the News men in Abuja on Monday.

He said that some unscrupulous seed entrepreneurs were defrauding the farmers by selling fake seeds that had resulted to poor yield in the
past.

He further stated that it was illegal for anyone to sell seed in open
containers in the markets without clearance from the seed council.

According to him, the seed Act N0 72 of 1992 mandates only the Council to regulate the quality of seed for farmers to have improved yields.

He stated that the sole purpose of the law was to regulate the
production, marketing, trade and use of seeds in Nigeria.

“The activities of fake seed dealers which has become serious problem
to the council and farmers, had led to the establishment of a modern
seed market to get quality seeds for farmers to use.

“It is common knowledge that seed dealers now sell poor seeds or
unregulated seeds to farmers in open markets.

“It is illegal for anyone to sell seeds in open containers or with
false labels or fake seeds in our markets.

“We are about to conclude the establishment of a modern seed market and working with stakeholders to commence the markets very soon.

“The first of which will be within the council’s headquarters, where
farmers nationwide can get quality input near their areas of use.

“The market will provide the farmers with the right locations to get
quality seeds in their area of use,’’ he said.

He noted that a lot of poor quality seeds come in through the border
without clearance and declaration to the council.

The DG stated that the council will partner with all government
agencies and the Nigerian Customs to check the quality and
acceptability of the seeds that come into the country.

He urged entrepreneurs marketing seeds without permission of the
council to come out and register with the council to legalize their
business to avoid being prosecuted in law court.

The DG also advised the farmers to stop patronising open market
business for seeds.

“I encourage farmers to do things differently this year to ensure a
bumper harvest in 2018 by using only seeds from accredited sources,”
he said.

He, however, warned that producers of fake seeds in the country risk
two years jail term or an option of N2million fine, if caught.

 

Arinze A