People in rural communities in Nigeria are predominantly farmers. Some cultivate cash crops such as cocoa, cashew nuts, peanuts, sesame seeds, cotton, bitter kola, etc.The country is also blessed with mineral resources such as coal, iron ore, charcoal, tin, bronze, petroleum, etc. Despite the abundant products, only petroleum is mostly exported very few rich individuals.Unfortunately, most of the farmers shy away from cash crop production to food crop farming because they lack awareness of foreign trading and its importance to their economic well being.
Consequently, I and my group is ready to lead the farmers in the rural communities to open trade and market access. We have a database of over 1000 names and contact information of interested foreign buyers of our products from US, UK, China, India, Germany, Vietnam, etc. We intend to work in collaboration with NGOs, government agencies and most of our foreign buyers to provide market platforms to the rural community dwellers. We have begun to create awareness of economic value of cash crops to over 850,000 rural communities in the six Geo-political zones in Nigeria.
Fortunately, our foreign partners have agreed to commit 30% part funding to every cash crop farmer who is a member of registered agriculture co-operative societies. We intend to take the market by 'storm'. Power must change hands because the rich exporters and their middlemen will no longer cheat and exploit the farmers. Every producer and supplier of cash crop shall have direct access to buyers anywhere in the world. The high cost of synthetic fertilizer will not be a problem because charcoal production factories shall produce over 150MT/day in every 10 rural communities. HOW WE INTEND TO CARRY OUT THE PROJECT
- ORGANIZE TRAINING PROGRAM: As farmers thrive, they care for the land, strengthen their communities, generate income for themselves and others, and produce food for their region. Our role is to facilitate the training, land-access, networks, and mentoring systems throughout the start-up years.
- ESTABLISH RURAL RESOURCE CENTRES (RRCs): These are community-managed centres that offer farmers access to knowledge, interactive learning, and linkage to networks – among farmers and with private sector firms, NGOs, and government.
- ENSURE THAT EVERY FARMER BELONGS TO A CO-OPERATIVE SOCIETY: We believe that co-operative groups will have Access to: Government Support Training on Fishery. Animal Husbandry and Crop Farming Local and International Markets Cheap Land and Farm Workers Micro-Credit Loan Facilities.
By; Anietie Akpan