Farmers are the bedrock of the nation’s economy, providing food, raw materials, employment, the medium of trade, transportation, e.t.c to various sectors of the economy.
In Nigeria, about 80% of the food produced directly from the farm are freshly consumed without going through industrial processing. The farmers ensure adequate food supply to the entire nation.
Between the farmers and the consumers, there are various commercial activities, involving Agro products and the traders, ensuring that the entire population is well fed.
As such, farmers are the principal or most important aspect in the value chain of our economy, and the moment there’s any economic downtime or hardship the farmers are the major recipient of the economic pain, which necessitates farmers to sell below cost price ensuring that the masses are well fed at the risk of incurring so much loss.
In difficult times as this, the farmers also ensure that the salaries and welfare of staffs are fully and adequately taken care of despite the economic hardship occasioned by the pandemic (Covid-19) and this is so, in a period where so many Companies/organizations fail to pay their staffs in full. This implies that farmers are not just profit-driven but conscience-driven.
The average Nigerian consumer may have witnessed that the price of farm products are not on the increase, despite the increase in raw materials
Farmers deserve to be celebrated and honoured…
During this covid-19 pandemic and various government lockdowns, farmers ensured adequate food distribution to consumers amid large quantities of farm produce perishing, not deterred by the increase in raw materials, farmers were still selling produce at prices below cost price, making sure that there’s food for all. In spite of their losses, farmers also donated generously to the government in a bid to help in the fight of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Farmers should be treated like kings.
Businessmen and women also make huge profits from the sales of farm produce and they in turn resell these farm products to the end-users, thereby supplying food to the entire population.
From the farmer forecast – the current food supply chain of the entire population is said to be about 207 million people in Nigeria and it has been projected that in 2030 Nigerian population will be about 350 million. Farmers are already forecasting and projecting food security for the future, by so doing it has promoted a source of livelihood to support an average family.
Due to the rising cost of living in other professions such as teaching, security personnel, banking, and so on, workers have resulted in selling farm produce to assist themselves financially since food is a primary need of man.
At this juncture, it is the plea that the Government and people in power should Help farmers to help Nigerians because any government or institution that assists the Nigerian farmers have directly/indirectly assisted the nation.
Written by: Mr. Nwapali Onyeagu