To equip farmers with modern farming skills, technology input and other extension capacity, two agricultural research institutes have underscored the need for training.
The Institutes of Agricultural Research(IAR) Ahmadu Bello University (ABU), Zaria, and the National Agricultural Extension Research and Liaison Services (NAERLS) on Tuesday organised a pre-season training for extension officers of the Agricultural Development Programme in the North west Zone.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the event, hosted by the Kaduna State Agricultural Development Programme (KADP) focused on training farmers to acquire skills in cotton and pepper production.
Speaking at the occasion, the Executive Director, IAR, Prof. Balarabe Tanimu, said that the training would refresh the participants’ knowledge and skills through interaction with experts in agricultural development process.
Tanimu, represented by his deputy, Prof. Isa Oni, said that such knowledge would instil in the participants the basic farm productivity, planning, land preparation and other rudiments of crop production.
Tanimu enjoined the participants to continue working with the institute to provide farmers with modern farming methods.
In his remarks, the Executive Director, NAERLS, Prof Sadiq Abubakar, said that the training was designed to address the identified field problems during the 2011 farming season.
Abubakar, represented by Dr. Muhammad Uthman, said that the challenge of agricultural production required the joint effort of research institutes and field staff to address.
He said that NAERLS would in future, organise a post-season training sessions.
Earlier, the Programme Manager, KADP, Dr. Abdulkadir Kasim, represented by the Director, Fadama Programe, Mr Ishaya Chikale, urged the participants to take maximum advantage of the training for the benefit of farmers.
Kassim described the training as an essential weapon for developing agriculture in the zone.
The Coordinator, Mr. Polycarp Garkon, said that the programme’s objective, was to introduce new findings by IAR and NAERLS on farming practices for dissemination to farmers.