Chief Gbemisade Adeniyi, Oyo State Chairman, National Association of Yam Farmers, Processors and Marketers says there is huge profit in yam farming business.
Adeniyi made this known in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria on Tuesday in Ibadan.
He said that 500 by 500 meters’ size of farm land could yield 50, 000 tubers of yam, valued at N10 million (50,000 dollars) at one dollar per yam.
“For example, people come from all over Nigeria to buy our yam in Kisi, Igboho, Igbeti and Saki area in Oke Ogun, at least 3 trailer load of yams everyday in Obada market, Kisi.
“The good thing is that many who buy also export, it has been a successful business for me as I have been able to build my own hotel in addition to other benefits,” he said.
Adeniyi, however, said that COVID-19 pandemic had negative effect on the farmers as most of the labourers they use could not travel from their place (Benin Republic) to Nigeria.
He said that the farmers also faced the challenge of insufficient capital, lack of incentives, the required education on yam farming and constraint in transportation of products to urban areas due to bad roads.
The yam dealer urged government at all levels to help tackle the challenges, support farmers training on modern farm technologies and provide storage facilities.
“In our little way, we train farmers on good Agronomy Practice in yam production and let them know that yam is a global profiting commodity.
“We also go for trainings at IITA, the mode of planting yam they teach really help a lot as we engage in them.
“When the farmers are supported adequately, it will help to produce more, thereby reducing the high cost of yam in market.
“The time for selling and bringing yam to market has passed for those of us here, so it brings high cost of demand and eventual hike in price.
“We are planting now, our harvesting starts from November to February and we believe the high cost of yam will reduce by then.
“We will surely produce to meet up with the demand, reduce scarcity and high cost if we receive adequate support,” Adeniyi said.
“Examples of rainy yams are Lasinrin and Ewuru. Dry season yam is the ones that does not have any leaf on it when harvesting, it’s the continuation of the rainy yam.
“Examples are Amula and Oju Yawolo. It’s this type of yam that exporters always demand and use,” he said.
Edited By: Chinyere Bassey/Grace Yussuf (NAN)
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