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April 2024

Farmers: How to ensure drastic reduction in price of rice

Nigerian rice.

By Felicia Imohimi

Rice Farmers Association of Nigeria (RIFAN) has advised the government at all levels on the measures needed to reduce the price of the commodity which has become unaffordable for many Nigerians.

The current price of a 50kg bag of rice ranges from N70,000 to N80,000 depending on quality as against last year’s price which ranged from N32,000 to N36000.

To reduce the price of the commodity, Mrs Nnenna Ejim, Vice President of RIFAN, said government at all levels should do everything necessary to end farmer-herder conflicts as well as kidnapping.

She attributed current hike in price of rice to insecurity, farmer-herder crisis, hike in input and rice blast.

Ejim identified other contributing factors to non-implementation of government policy like the anchor borrower programme, lack of insurance coverage for farmers, climate change, among others.

She decried that a lot of farmers were not able to process or harvest their crops last year due to fear of being killed or kidnapped.

“Government policy on anchor borrower was not implemented last year because of election and other factors like COVID-19 impact has created a huge gap in rice cultivation hence the hike.

“Russian-Ukraine war is affecting us seriously because they are the greatest provider of fertiliser and other input which we are the moment we have difficulties getting such input.

“The way forward in ensuring drastic reduction in price of rice is that government should prioritise security of its populace both in the farms and around communities.

“Farmers should be given inputs at subsidise rate and also enlighten farmers on climate smart agriculture so that they will not risk their lives or production trying to cultivate areas with lots of flood.

“There should be an issue of insurance package or coverage for farmers and making sure that insurance companies come to farmers rescue in the event of any disaster,’’ she said.

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Published Date: March 31, 2024

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