In Kano, farmers are celebrating a bumper harvest after adopting new technologies/techniques of modern farming introduced by SASAKAWA under the Kano State Agro-Pastoral Development Program (KSADP) Crop value chain.
The project, worth $90 million, expected to run for 5 years focusing on improving crop production and enhancing livestock productivity in the state is no doubt achieving it goals as confirmed by the testimonies of the farmers who are currently overwhelmed with joy over improvement recorded in terms of their farm produce.
According to the Program Officer, Regenerative Agriculture, SASAKAWA Africa Association, KSADP/SAA, Mr. Albert Taru Mathias, farmers were introduced to climate smart practices and climate smart agriculture with the view to adopting to existing climate realities considering its direct impact on their source of livelihood.
He said, to improve food production and security, the farmers were introduced to improved seeds that are drought, pest and disease tolerant and also have the capacity for yielding more than what the farmers produce previously while at the same time paying attention to the soil health by ensuring farmers minimize the use of modern fertilizers and other pest control substances filled with chemicals capable of damaging the soil and contributing more to global warming.
Albert who spoke during a 5 days KSADP Media Field Day in Kano revealed that farmers were introduced to the adaptation of biochar practice, a soil amendment technique that sequence carbon into the soil, improve soil health and retain soil moisture thereby boosting productivity.
Furthermore, that the farmers were also trained on compose making which encourages them to depend less on inorganic fertilizers as an alternative means of growing their crops and enhance soil health, describing regenerative agriculture as one of the best methods to foster food security.
Some farmers interviewed shared their experiences.
Hajiya Laraba Maijala a Maize Farmer at Kura town Kano who while sharing her experience with journalists at her residence at Salanta Kofar Arewa, Kura L.G.A has this to say; “My farming produce have increase greatly since Sasakawa introduce me to regenerative agriculture”.
“I was given climate resilient seeds with early maturing ability. Before now, I always end up with 20 bags from my 0.5 hectre but to my greatest surprise I got up to 38 bags from this harvest, I got an increase of 18 additional bags.
“This project is a life changer, it has made farming easier for me and other beneficiaries, I have even also learnt how to produce my own fertilizer and pesticides free from toxic chemicals harmful to human health and the soil”.
Ibrahim Yusuf, rice farmer at Kwanar Dummawa, Dawakain Tofa L.G.A of the state who was given Faro 44 climate smart seed in a joyous mode revealed he had 5.2 tons of produce as against the 1.5 tons recorded in the past.
“I am a proud beneficiary of the KSADP/Sasakawa project. This year, I harvested 69 bags (75kg) of rice paddy as against 17 to 18 bags I usually cultivated in the past. With this development, I hope to expand my farming from 1hectre for maximum harvest”.
Another maize farmer in Gwarzo Local Government Area of Kano State, Aminu Bakaniki, has this to say; “Farming before our contact with Sasakawa has been stressful, but that is all in the past now. I am now beginning to enjoy farming as a result of this project”.
“A part of the seeds, pesticides and other interventions, what I can not quantify is the knowledge Sasakawa has equipped me with. Today I can boast of 62 bags of maize against the 10 to 12 bags I usually get from the same 1hectre”.
“Farming to me, is now making sense and I hope to sustain and improve on what I have learnt from this project. I commend KSADP and Sasakawa for this intervention. The best we beneficiaries can do is to ensure to put into proper use knowledge and other materials received under this project”.
During the media tour, journalists from various media stations visited 17 locations where Sasakawa is implementing one form of intervention or the other scattered across 15 Local Government Area of the State.
So far, a total of 366,000 farmers in kano state have benefited from the Kano Agro pastoral project implemented by Sasakawa Africa Association.