Wednesday, 25 May 2016

‘Tomato Ebola’: Varsity to produce 800,000 tonnes of tomatoes

The management of the Benson Idahosa University, Edo State, on Wednesday said that it has concluded plans to produce 800,000 tonnes of tomatoes‎ to cushion the effects the shortage of the fruit in the country.

The statement came nearly 24 hours after the Federal Government ‎announced that the pest, Tuta absoluta, also known as “Tomato Ebola”, had invaded six states.
The Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Mr. Audu Ogbe, had on Tuesday explained that the pest, which was responsible for the massive destruction of tomatoes in farmlands, had spread to Jigawa, Kano, Katsina, Kaduna, Plateau and Lagos.

The Vice-Chancellor of the university, Prof. Ernest Izevbigie,‎ explained during a press briefing in Benin that the tomatoes would be produced annually by the institution’s Faculty of Agriculture.

He stressed that emphasis would be placed on quality and quantity, during production in order to boost food security.

Izevbigie said, “We are making an audacious statement that Benson Idahosa University is poised to produce 800,000 tonnes of tomatoes to ameliorate the present shortage in the supply of tomatoes in Nigeria in the next one year.

“We are at a risk of food insecurity; that is what is happening now. If you have food security, you will have plenty of food‎ available. But food security in this country is being threatened.”

‎On the reported attacks by Fulani herdsmen in several states, the vice chancellor, noted that the university also had the capacity to cultivate grass through the use of technology.

Izevbigie faulted the call for the importation of grass, which he said could put pressure on the naira and pose health risks due to soil incompatibility.

He noted that, with the abundance of land, Nigeria could be self-sufficient in forage crops production, adding that the soil and conditions were highly suitable for the production of forage crops.







Punch

No comments:

Post a Comment

All comments, advise and encouragement are always welcome.
We are here to serve you better.

Thanks for visiting!



Management