The assemblage of experts from government, private sector, academia and civil society in a 3-day African Economic Congress in Abuja have tipped African farmers several approaches to the billion-dollar agricultural business.
They unanimously reached a conclusion that revolution must come to pass in the agricultural sector for the business to become one-trillion dollar industry in Africa by 2030.
In attendance was the director of Machine and Equipment Corporation Africa Limited (MECA), Mr. Ishaku Gashinbaki, who emphasized the vital stand of mechanization in the efforts to actualize the dream of an agricultural revolution. Mr. Gabinshaki added that;
‘Unfortunately, in the Sub-sahara, mechanization is as low as one percent, while animal power is ten percent and human power is 89 percent’
One of the issues discussed was the estimated 33 million small-scale farmers who have no access to proper marketing channels, new innovations among other issues.
To this, Principal Research Economist in the Research, Networking and Partnerships Division of the Development Research Department at the African Development Bank (AfDB), Mr. Anthony Musonda Simpasa, made a clarion call for the need of farmers for modern techniques and infrastructure.
In his further speech, Mr. Simpasa urged farmers to come together saying it’s a tool for improvement in the sector.
From his own viewpoint, another speaker in the program, Mr. Emeka Ewachinere said farmers’ easy access to data and finance is the wheel on which agricultural business optimization is pivoted.
On the issue of land, he advised farmers to adopt the cultivation of genetically-modified produce because land cannot be increased.