By Charles Coffie Gyamfi, Abeokuta
September 17, 2017
Nigeria is currently the largest producer of cassava in the world with an annual output of over 34 million tonnes, but even with this, the country is yet to meet its local demand.
To address the shortfall in its production, the African Agricultural Technology Foundation (AATF), a Non-Governmental Organisation through the Cassava Mechanisation and Agro-processing Project (CAMAP), with the support of United Kingdom Agency for International Development (UKAID) is working with both smallholder and commercial farmers from Ogun, Oyo, Osun, Kwara and Kogi States, to deploy machines to assist them in improving the cassava value chain.
These machines are: cassava planting machine; boom sprayer; ploughing and harrowing machines; and cassava harvesting machine.
The machines, according to the country coordinator of AATF-CAMAP programme, Mr Ayodele Omowunmi, would assist farmers in harrowing, ploughing, planting, application of herbicides and harvesting of cassava with ease.
As at now, the programme has organised farmers, mostly youths into clusters in six states: Osun-15 clusters and five commercial farms; Ogun-20 clusters and two commercial farms; Oyo-seven clusters and two commercial farms; Kwara-five and two commercial farms; Kogi-three clusters; and Delta-one commercial farm.