NEPC DEEPENS CROSS RIVER FARMERS’ CAPACITY ON ORGANIC FARMING
In its quest to boost Nigerian agric export, the Nigerian Export Promotion Council (NEPC) Calabar Smart Office has organized a one-day workshop to train farmers on organic farming and certification for export.
The workshop themed ‘Boosting Global Demand for Nigerian Agro products through Organic Certification’ is geared towards ensuring food safety, and encouraging the production of high nutritional quality products for both domestic and international markets.
Declaring the workshop open on Tuesday in Ikom Local Government Council, Kingsley Egumi, chairman of council commended the NEPC for partnering with farmers in the local government.
Egumi, who was represented by Sylvia Adeneye, secretary of the council, said NEPC has met farmers’ expectations, and the workshop on promoting organic agriculture is timely.
Adeneye said the programme is a demonstration of the federal government’s efforts in addressing challenges facing Nigerian export of agricultural produce.
According to her, the programme is designed with the primary aim of helping smallholders farmers, producers, and exporters improve on their farming activities and obtaining certification for organic products.
Adeneye defined organic farming as an integrated farming system that strives sustainably, enhancing soil fertility and biodiversity while prohibiting the use of synthetic fertilizers.
“Awareness about organic farming is still very low and hence the need to create awareness because it is, therefore, essential for public and private sector stakeholders to have a clear understanding of the organic system plan.
“Cross River state is blessed with a golden green economy of agro products such as cocoa, rice, cassava which can be harnessed for export. Globally, the emphasis has been placed on organic agriculture and this creates a huge market opportunity for its products,” she said.
Also in a welcome address, Ejor Achu Bisong, chairman of Cocoa Association of Nigeria– Cross River State Chapter said the control methods and management system may be new and urged the exporters of cocoa and palm produce to increase their support through these veritable instrument’s.
” We shall however at the end of this workshop be able to do a work plan that will enable us to produce high nutritional products in sufficient quantities for the domestic and international market.
“The NEPC has lived up to expectations over the years in partnering with us in all areas relevant to enhancing quality products,” he stated.