One may ask, however, “How does the ban on the importation of chicken affect the Agricultural Sector?” Would it affect the economy negatively or positively? We would like to strongly believe that it would open up the market for locally reared chickens, which would inadvertently provide a market for chicken feed, consisting of grains like Maize, Wheat offal, Soybean and other grains, of which statistics say Nigeria has the capacity to produce on a large scale.
Due to several factors like corruption, poor investment in production, insecurity in most of the areas where crop and livestock production would thrive, and of course the intense relationship Nigeria has with crude oil and its by-products, there hasn’t been much room for the Agricultural sector to thrive, causing the importation of a commodity like wheat, to be at a staggering N635 billion (about $4 billion) annually.
We have seen, over the past few years, an attempt by several initiatives to revive the agricultural sector in Nigeria. One of such attempts is the Agricultural Transformation Agenda (ATA), which has come up with various measures, including the inclusion of 10 per cent cassava flour to wheat flour production.
According to Leadership.ng, the executive director, Lake Chad Research Institute, Dr. Oluwasina Olabanji, explained that the average grain yield for wheat in the country is above 2.0 tons per hectare, although research has shown that this can be easily tripled if proper crop management is adopted.
With these statistics, it is plain and clear to see that there is a very ripe and ready market for potential Agriculturists. We can see that recent developments like the ban on the importation of frozen chicken and other farm produce, has allowed a glimmer of hope to shine in the Agricultural Sector. Farmers and even businessmen are beginning to see the light in these areas and would stop at nothing to harness opportunities. This positions grain and livestock farming as the next big thing in the Agricultural sector.