FUNAAB seeks more youth participation in Agric
Youths have been urged to take up agriculture as a business and means of livelihood.
Speaking at the 2019 Agribusiness Excellence Recognition Award, put together by the Golden Crown Agricultural High School, Awa Ijebu, Ogun State, Vice-Chancellor of Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta (FUNAAB), Prof. Kolawole Salako said the population of developing countries, such as Nigeria, was increasing at a very high rate, hence, the need for increased agricultural production to feed the growing population.
Represented by the Deputy Director, Agricultural Media Resources and Extension Centre (AMREC), Dr. Olalekan Oyekunle, the Vice-Chancellor said: “For us to feed the increasing population, there is need for increased agricultural production to meet the full demand of these people and reduce importation. The involvement of youths in agriculture would give them the opportunity to showcase their full potentials in agriculture and agribusiness.”
He advised farmers to ensure they have a succession programme so that young ones can be actively involved in agricultural practices, saying: “When we look at the demand for food and production of food, you will see that there is a wide gap between the two. We do not have sufficient food production and we have more demand for food, and this may be as a result of many factors such as lack of successful programme because the majority of farmers in the rural areas are becoming too old with little or no youth participation.”
He reiterated the commitment of FUNAAB towards helping young ones to become successful agriculturists in the future, adding that FUNAAB is globally known as a centre of excellence in teaching, research and extension services.
The Vice-Chancellor stated that the main goal of the University is to impact true training, practical skills, and knowledge that are relevant to agricultural activities, stressing that FUNAAB had been training and encouraging secondary school students, to impact the spirit of entrepreneurship in them through AMREC programme called ‘Agriculture in School Programme.’
He added that over 650 students from 16 secondary schools had been trained on different agricultural enterprises, such as the production of crops, poultry production, snail growing, fisheries, bee-keeping practice, and honey, among others.
The Chairman, Planning Committee, Dr. Olumuyiwa Akinsola, encouraged the participants to network, to provide more opportunities and links to various agricultural businesses. He disclosed that the African countries’ edition of the programme would be organised next year with participants from Liberia and Ivory Coast, stressing that it would open a good opportunity for African Food Survival Ambassadors (AFSA) to meet and exchange business notes in providing quality, cheap, and affordable food for all Africans.
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