Following the introduction of new irrigation technology in rice production in the eight local government areas of the state where the
crop was grown in large quantity, Anambra State government says it is targeting increase in yield from the current 345000 metric tons to 600000 metric tons this year.
The state governor, Chief Willie Obiano, who spoke during the inspection of the multi-million naira Center Pivot Irrigation System
at Egwe Agwa Ogbakuba in Ogbaru local government area, said the state would become a net exporter of rice once the target was met as its local demand would have been surpassed.
According to the governor, the installation of the new irrigation of the system in four locations in the state was to ensure all year round rice production, with the attendant multiplier effect of empowering of about 2500 farmers in the state.
He explained that the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, had agreed to provide funds to Anambra State government to buy off all the paddy rice produced in the state, while millers would buy all the paddy rice from government, adding that by so doing, the issue of unsold rice produced by the farmers would not arise.
He also said the state government would support the training of youth farmers to update their knowledge in modern agriculture and commended the people of the state for keying into the state government’s agricultural policy.
Obiano further said that Sorghum would be added among the crops to be grown under the FADAMA 111 additional funding, stating that the Onitsha –based Sabmiller Breweries was a ready market for the sorghum to be produced in the state.
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The state coordinator of FADAMA 111additional financing, Mr Chukwuka Egbueh said that as part of efforts to ensure increased rice output, 11 rural roads leading to the rice production belts in the state were being constructed, just as 18 youth and women groups had been assisted through the provision rice mills, tricycles, threshers and de-stoners to ease their production activities.
He also said that FADAMA had built drying slabs at Umumbo, Ogbaru, Amanuke and Ifite Ogwari to ensure faster drying of rice, adding that the envisaged target would surely be met with the inputs by the state government.
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