FG announces N1.6bn recovery package to palliate ginger farmers over N12bn losses

FG announces N1.6bn recovery package to palliate ginger farmers over N12bn losses

Nigerian ginger farmers have incurred losses amounting to N12 billion due to the catastrophic blight epidemic that decimated their crops in 2023.
The outbreak, which primarily affected the regions of Kaduna, Plateau, Nasarawa states, and the Federal Capital Territory, has led to the destruction of a significant percentage of the year’s ginger yield.

This was disclosed by the minister of state for agriculture and food security, Sabi Abdullahi in Abuja yesterday while inaugurating Ginger Blight Epidemic Control Taskforce, a multi-disciplinary team of experts and stakeholders, set-up by the federal government to investigate and implement adequate preventive, mitigatiand corrective measures to address epidemic and re-ignite ginger value chain.

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The fungal infection, initially detected in August 2023, caused an abrupt yellowing and withering in the ginger leaves, ultimately leading to the decay of the ginger rhizomes in the soil and has affected livelihoods of farmers.
The minister also announced the provision of a N1.6 billion recovery package through the National Agriculture Development Fund (NADFund) and establishment of a 20-hectare site for clean ginger seed cultivation.

This initiative, according to him, underscored the federal government’s commitment to revitalise the ginger industry and reinforce Nigeria’s position as a leading ginger producer in line with President Bola Tinubu’s administration agenda for food security.

The minister also pledged the federal government full support to the affected farmers with a promise of seeking solutions to prevent future outbreak, including investment in research and development spearheaded by the National Root Crops Research Institute (NRCRI), and the enhancement of agricultural extension services.

He said, ” Our preliminary estimates suggest affected farmers in Southern Kaduna lost over N12 billion, highlighting the significant financial blow, furthermore, considering that over 85% of Nigeria’s ginger cultivation occurs in this region, we can safely assume a substantial loss of cultivated land, potentially exceeding 70 per cent.
However, let me assure you, amidst this rough patch, there is hope. The federal government under the committed leadership of our farmer-friendly President, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, recognises the critical role the ginger industry plays in our national economy and the profound impact this epidemic has had on our farmers.

The ginger blight epidemic serves as a stark reminder of the importance of preparedness in safeguarding our agricultural resources. By investing in research, extension services, and farmer support systems, we can build a more sustainable future for our agricultural sector, ensuring Nigeria’s food security and continued success as a leading global ginger producer”.


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