As a step towards boosting food security, Delta State Government has presented farm inputs to existing youth farmers across the state under it’s Youth Agricultural Entrepreneurs Programme (YAGEP).
The inputs which is the first tranche, comprised five to 12 bags of fertilizers such as NPK 15:15:15; urea; mariate of potash; and single super phosphate and pre-emergence and post-emergence agro-chemicals.
This is in addition to cash for land preparation, seedlings, weeding and harvesting.
Chief Job Creation Officer in the state, Prof. Eric Eboh who presided over the distribution in Asaba said the beneficiaries were youth farmers enrolled in crop production under the 2020/2021 cycle of YAGEP.
Eboh said the aim was to support them to expand their agricultural enterprises, become employers of labour and boost food security.
He said the beneficiaries had earlier be trained on farm enterprise at a workshop where they were exposed to best agricultural practices in farm enterprise management, innovative production technologies and profitable agribusiness.
YAGEP supervisor, Mr. Sam Ndikanwu, advised the beneficiaries on the proper methods of application of the farm inputs such as the fertilizers and agro-chemicals.
Ndikanwu disclosed that the distribution was done in five centres of Asaba, Agbor, Kwale, Ughelli and Warri.
The beneficiaries “are not freshers, they are used to application of agro-chemicals and have received adequate training on the application of these fertilizers.
“Agriculture is time specific, hence we are giving out these inputs during the raining season. Our crops are rain feed and this is the planting season. We are doing this now to get good yield in order to boost food security in the state.”
Some of the beneficiaries, including Uche Okafor Preston and Stephanie Uwadia thanked the state government for the intervention.
They said the inputs would help expand their farm enterprises, boost production capacity and create job by engaging more youths to work on the farm.