The International Institute for Tropical Agriculture (IITA), on Wednesday revealed that the total sum of $1.4 million (over N400, 000, 000) will be paid as incentive to Nigerian maize farmers making proper use of Aflasafe in 2018.
An official of the agricultural institute, Dr. Debo Akande made this disclosure in his presentation at the Year 5 Implementer Induction and Training for farmers using Aflasafe to reduce the rate of aflatoxins of their crops, which took place at the IITA’s conference centre, Ibadan.
According Dr. Akande, the total sum of $674, 355 was paid as incentive to farmers making use of Aflasafe last year, as part of measures to encourage the use of the product to ensure “safer crops, improved income and better health among Nigerians”.
While maintaining that Aflasafe has been contributing to the economic growth of Nigeria in the last five years, he revealed further that the number of maize farmers using the product in the country increased from 1,015 in year 2013 to 26, 063 in 2018.
In his own presentation, another IITA official, Alejandro Ortega-Beltran, said aflatoxins are highly toxic metabolites common in maize, and that there is history of aflatoxicosis in Africa.
Ortega-Beltran maintained that the proper use of Aflasafe has been helping to reduce the level of aflatoxin in maize planted in Nigeria and other African countries.
He listed improved health and nutrition of people, especially women and children; and increased livestock productivity and profitability as some of the benefits of the use of Aflasafe by maize farmers.
Packaged by Gbenga Abegunrin