News

June 11, 2024

Kwara Agric Commissioner advocates backyard farming to combat food insecurity

Kwara Agric Commissioner advocates backyard farming to combat food insecurity

By Demola Akinyemi, Ilorin

The Kwara State Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development, Mrs Oloruntoyosi Thomas, has called on residents to utilize available spaces in their homes for farming as a practical solution to tackle immediate hunger and the rising cost of food in the country.

Speaking to newsmen in her office in Ilorin, the state capital on Tuesday, Mrs. Thomas who noted that the state government is implementing the scheme across the sixteen local governments, stressed the importance of utilizing small spaces in homes to plant vegetables and other crops, thereby supplementing household nutrition with a diverse range of plants.

The Commissioner noted that the Kwara State Government, recognizing the importance of this initiative, has introduced a backyard farming program aimed at encouraging residents to start their gardens.

She added that the state government has commenced the scheme by supporting 50 households with seedlings across the sixteen local governments until every household is captured.

“We have strategic plans in place and have begun implementing them by training at least 50 households in each of the 16 local governments on how to effectively carry out backyard farming.

“Additionally, we are providing seeds to these households to kick-start their farming activities immediately after training,” Mrs. Thomas explained.
She emphasized the potential of backyard farming to significantly enhance food security and effectively serve as the alternative to tackling the rising costs of foods in the market.

Mrs. Thomas highlighted that backyard farming, also known as homestead farming, is a realistic and sustainable approach to address food shortages and high food prices.

“If many households engage in this type of farming, we will see an abundant supply of food, which in turn will reduce prices and tackle hunger,” she noted.

According to Mrs. Thomas, this farming practice not only ensures a healthier and richer food supply but also contributes to a safer environment.

She pointed out that homestead gardening can have a profound impact on food security by boosting both short-term and long-term food and vegetable production within communities and households.

The commissioner who noted that feedbacks from previously trained households has been overwhelmingly positive, stressed that,”We must collectively act now, not just with our brains but with our hands, to mitigate the impact of food shortages and hunger.”

“During this period of high food costs, it is crucial for households to make judicious use of their small spaces for gardens,” she said.

Mrs. Thomas also mentioned that backyard farming is a strategic intervention that addresses both immediate and future food needs.

“By encouraging backyard farming, we are not only solving the problem of food insecurity today but also laying a foundation for a more sustainable and self-sufficient future,” she stated.

The initiative aligns with the broader goals of the Kwara State Government to promote agricultural development and rural empowerment. Mrs. Thomas reaffirmed stressing that government is commitment to supporting this initiative and ensuring its success across the state.

Mrs. Thomas reiterated the importance of backyard farming as a tool for improving food security and reducing hunger.

“This initiative is part of our comprehensive approach to agriculture and rural development, and we are confident that it will have a lasting positive impact on our communities,” she said.