9 Problems Of Agriculture In Nigeria

Problems Of Agriculture In Nigeria
Agriculture is the cultivation of land and breeding of animals and plants to provide food, fiber, medicinal plants and other products that help to sustain and enhance life.
It describes the practice of growing crops or raising animals for the purpose of food and other benefits. Every farmer's wish is to have a bountiful harvest after each planting season but in some cases, the revise is the case.
In most African countries like Nigeria, Kenya, Ghana, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Ivory Coast, Morocco and Gabon there are many challenges that farmers face that affect the productivity of the crops and we'll state some of them below.

Problems Facing Agriculture In Nigeria

- Inadequate Funding Of the Sector by the Federal Government

The success of the agricultural sector is heavily affected and crippled by the inconsistency of the government in funding the agricultural projects. Funds that are meant for the agricultural sector are either embezzled or diverted to other sectors that don't directly or indirectly benefit the agricultural sector. This has contributed a lot in the gap between African agriculture and industrialization, thereby leading to the farmers relying on old tools and resources that generate that are just adequate for small scale results

- Lack Of Proper Transportation Medium

This is not just an issue in the agricultural industry, but also in many other sectors. These transportation issues has contributed to the problems in the marketing of agricultural products among other things. In some cases, the proceeds of a complete farming season that would have yielded a lot of profit when sold in the cities are left to waste or sold in the local markets were things are usually very cheap.
Many roads that connect the cities to the villages are not very good, while the rest are cut off from the major roads.

- Lack of Proper Storage Facilities

Instead of the farmers to store their farm produces for some time before selling them off, they are forced to either sell them off immediately at giveaway prices or produce just what the can sell off in a short period of time.
In some cases, the farm proceeds get eaten up or spoilt by pests and rodents, thereby posing a great loss to the farmers.

- No Irrigation capability

Because of the unpredictable state of rainfall in Nigeria, there is a great need for farmers to have to have artificial sources of water near their farmlands. While most developed parts of the world like the United States and Israel have successfully perfected the art of artificial irrigation, Nigerian farmers struggle struggle while carrying out there farming practices and hoping that the amount of rain required for a bountiful harvest will fall. 

- Paucity Of Entrepreneurial Mindset Of Mentality

Many Nigerian farmers just cultivate their farmlands for their personal/family's consumption. This has made them to ignore the fact that they can upgrade to a commercial type of agriculture. Do you know that you can be making as much as N800,000 from an ugu farm in Nigeria? There are many benefits of commercial agriculture that the subsistence farmer is still ignorant of.
Also many farmers that are into subsistence agriculture have big dreams but lack the required funds to actualize their dreams.

- Use Of Obsolete Methods And Crude Tools In Commercial Farming

The use crude tools and outdated farming techniques in the agricultural industry is affecting the productivity in no little way. For example, as a poultry farmer, you can't compare your proceeds from a local poultry to those from a modern poultry.
Nigerian farmers are still inexperienced in mechanized farming methods and livestock production because of inaccessibility to training centers where they can be exposed to modernized farming methods.

- Insufficient Land for Commercial Purposes

There are not enough lands for commercial purposes especially in the Eastern parts of Nigeria where almost every single piece of land is valued. Due to this small-scale land ownership, the quantity of food produced by these farmers is limited thereby leading to Nigerian high rate of food importation. According to Growsel.com, Nigeria spent over $15 billion on food importation in 2016. The money should have yielded a great result if it was invested in the agricultural sector.

- Inaccessibility to Hybrid Seeds

I remember when I was going through my Industrial Training section at the Imo State University Botanical Gardens, I got an improved variety of maize from the Imo Agricultural Development Programme (ADP), Owerri and my maize did really very well.
Assuming I wasn't enlightened on that aspect, I might have just planted a random seed that might end up being affected by pests.

- Lack of Market

Farmers from many parts of Nigeria cultivate a particular crop at a particular season thereby increasing competition. For example, in some parts of the year, if you enter the market, you'll be surprised at the number of maize sellers in the market. Then at another point, all the maize in the market will disappear and another crop will emerge.
This is beneficial to the consumers because the products get cheap, but it's not favorable to the producers. This is so because of improper market facilities and poor government regulations.

These are some of the challenges facing the agricultural sector in Nigeria. If they are left unchecked, in a few years to come Nigeria will be topping the list of countries that import food in Africa and if possible, the whole world.
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