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PROBLEMS MILITATING AGAINST RICE PACKAGE

CHAPTER ONE

1.0 INTRODUCTION

1.1 Background to the Study

Rice (Oryza sativa L.) is an important food and cash crop in the world. It feeds more than half of the world’s population (Ojohomon, 1995). The world grows 153.8 million hectares of rice annually with average worldwide yield of 3,885 kg/ha. This gives a production of 598.8 million metric tons, which is greater than that of either corn (590.8 million metric tons) or wheat (576.3 million metric tons) (FAO, 2011). Rice has become an important economic crop and the major staple food for millions of people in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) in general and Nigeria in particular (Africa Rice Centre, 2012). It is an important staple food and a commodity of strategic significance across much of Africa. Driven by changing food preferences in the urban and rural areas and compounded by high population growth rates and rapid urbanization, rice consumption in SSA has been growing by 6 percent per annum over the years, more than double the rate of population growth (FAO, 2011). AATF (2012) however, revealed that the area under rice production in SSA has stagnated at about 8 million hectares, producing about 14.52 million tonnes per year against an annual consumption of 21 million tonnes. These production and consumption trends i]mply a production deficit of about 6.5 million tonnes per year valued at US$ 1.7 billion that is imported annually. In other word, AATF,(2012) added that insufficient rice production affects the wellbeing of over 20 million smallholder farmers in Africa who depend on rice as their main food. In Nigeria, the demand for rice has been increasing at a much faster rate than in other West African countries since the mid 1970s. For instance, during the 1960s, 2 Nigeria had the lowest per-capita annual consumption of rice in the sub-region (average of 3 kg). Since then, Nigerian per-capita consumption levels have grown significantly at 7.3% per annum. Estimated annual rice demand for Nigeria in 2009 is said to be 5 million tonnes, while production is said to average about 2.21 million tonnes. The national rice supply-demand gap of 2.79 million tonnes is expected to be bridged by importation (NRDS, 2012) which has constituted serious drain on the nation’s foreign exchange. The potential land area for rice production in Nigeria is between 4.6 million and 4.9 million ha. Out of this, only about 1.7 million ha or 35 percent of the available land area is presently cropped to rice (WARDA, 2005). Rice is however, one of the major food crops cultivated by farmers in all agro-ecological zones of Nigeria and it is widely consumed by a large proportion of the population (Akande, 2001). The main production ecologies for rice in Nigeria are rainfed lowland, rainfed upland irrigated lowland, deep water/floating and mangrove swamp. Of these, rainfed lowland rice has the largest share of the rice area (50%) and rice production (WARDA, 2005). In recent years, rice production has been expanding at the rate of 6% per annum in Nigeria, with 70% of the production increase due mainly to land expansion and only 30% being attributed to an increase in productivity (Hussein, 2000). Much of the expansion has been in the rainfed systems, particularly in the two major ecosystems that make up 78% of the upland and rainfed lowland systems (Awotide et al., 2010). However, several factors are responsible for the low rice production. Nitrogen deficiency and drought have been cited as leading constraints to upland rice production, while high salinity is increasingly becoming a major problem in many rice growing areas of Africa. As a matter of fact, farmers in Nigeria are predominantly peasant. However, the leading constraints to adoption of crop improved technologies in include high cost of technology, lack of availability and accessibility of technology, absence of input support services, and lack of adequate training among farmers.

Statement of the problem

Technical change in the form of adoption of improved agricultural production technologies has been reported to have positive impacts on agricultural productivity growth in the developing world (Nin et al., 2003). Promotion of technical change through the generation of agricultural technologies by research and their dissemination to end users plays a critical role in boosting agricultural productivity in developing countries (Mapila, 2011). Moreover, Minten and Barrett (2008) observed that the availability of modern agricultural production technologies to end users, and the capacities of end users to adopt and utilise these technologies are also critical. It is believed that an effective way to increase productivity is broad-based adoption of new farming technologies. In addition, as suggested by Oladele (2005) adoption of improved technologies will improve food security and reduce poverty if barriers to their continued use are overcome. As recognized by Doss (2003 and 2006) one way of improving agricultural productivity in particular, and rural livelihood in general, is through the introduction of improved agricultural technologies to farmers. Doss (2003) also opined that adoption of improved technologies is an important means to increase 5 the productivity of small- holder agriculture in Africa, thereby fostering economic growth and improved wellbeing for millions of the poor households. Technological change in agricultural inputs which is fundamental to the transformation of Rural Africa has not been fully embraced by small-holder farmers in the region

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Step 1: make payment of N2,000 to the below bank details


NAME:                       TITUS AYANI SOLA
BANK:                       FIRST BANK PLC
ACCT NO:                  3111741042
ACCOUNT TYPE:       SAVINGS
AMOUNT:                  N2000

NAME:                       TITUS AYANI SOLA


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ACCOUNT TYPE:       SAVINGS

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Updated: 5th August 2019 — 8:52 am

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