Agribusiness in Nigeria: Road to Sustainable Agricultural Development in Nigeria
Agribusiness, also known as an agricultural business, is farming, producing, marketing, and managing agricultural products such as crop production and livestock.
Agriculture has been an essential factor to humanity, from the foods we eat and the fine fibers in our clothes.
Farmworkers, livestock farmers, and farm managers are affiliates of agriculture. However, with technology and an increase in the global market, the agricultural business has further advanced to meet and resolve various needs while embracing investors and all-fiber and food chain agents, investors, and other institutions influencing it.
How is Agribusiness the way forward?
With the recent global happenings and the impact of the coronavirus on the food chain, we see a food crisis lurking if not handled properly, and this is what the food and agricultural organization of the United Nations had to say about this: "We risk a looming food crisis unless measures are taken fast to protect the most vulnerable, keep global food supply chains alive and mitigate the pandemic's impacts across the food system" – FAO.org.
We hope that the pandemic will eventually depart, but how soon it causes more disruption on the food chain is what we don't know.
Many elements and activities surrounding the food supply and demand chain are already affected by the pandemic.
Border closure, lockdown, market, trade, and agricultural supply chain management, and in return, this has limited people's access to sufficient food supply, most notably in countries hit hard by the pandemic or those already affected by a high level of food insecurity.
Although disruptions have been minimal in terms of food supply and adequacy, there is a higher rise in demand for nutritious food and a lower supply rate due to the slowdown of all economies worldwide.
According to a statement by the food and agricultural organization of the United Nations, we should brace up to experience more disruptions in the food supply chains, especially in the high-value commodities (fruits, vegetables, meat, fish, milk, etc.)
You may ask, what are the signs we are experiencing that could lead to a food security problem
- Disruptions in socio-economic activities
- Logistic challenges
- Restrictions in local food supply chain
- Food import-dependent countries are struggling
All these and more are some of the first signs that signify an incoming food security problem.
Agribusiness and its Role in Sustainable Agriculture
Sustainable agricultural development is the critical enhancer for adequate food security, not just for short-term purposes like surviving a pandemic but for sustaining life in general now and for the future generations. As human beings, we will always need food to survive.
Although Nigeria's economy is still tied to the oil market; Agriculture was the dominant source of its economy and foreign exchange source before the oil find. The less attention given to the agricultural sector has led to multifaceted challenges in the country, ranging from food insecurity to unemployment.
According to the data revealed in the foreign trade report released by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) and Chief Audu Ogbeh, Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Nigeria spends almost $22 billion every year on food importation, a situation he described as unsustainable and posed a danger to the nation's economy (vanguard). Now more than ever is the time to invest in sustainable agriculture.
This data proves that Nigeria is under the radar of this statement-Food import-dependent country struggles to have the needed resources to buy food. In turn, as demand for food will decrease over the next months, prices should go down in 2020, and this will hurt farmers and the agricultural sector" – FAO.org.
Benefits of Agribusiness to Sustainable Agricultural Development in Nigeria
Food security is everyone's business. As individuals, we should begin to explore and employ ideas on how we can all contribute to agriculture's sustainability to reach an optimum food supply chain in the country.
However, an agribusiness like Trado Global has recognized that not everyone can manage farmland. Other persons may be occupied in different countries, contributing their quota to battle the pandemic.
As a specialized agribusiness, we have engrossed ourselves in providing a platform to enhance food security through sustainable agricultural development. Also, identify fast-growing agricultural food crops that can be produced and ready for consumption within a short period.
The types of agricultural ideas in agribusiness are endless ranging from vegetative farming, spice production from pepper farms, and fruit juice production from fruits farming such as pineapple farms.
These sustainable agricultural practices will, in turn;
- Meet the demand for food by increasing the production of sufficient human food, fiber, and fuel to meet a fast-rising population's needs and future generations.
- Increase profitable farm income for farmers
- Increase a profitable Return of investment (ROI) for farm investors
- Improve the standard of living for farmers and communities
- Production of sufficient human food, feed, fiber, and fuel to meet the needs of a sharply rising population
- Protection of the immediate, improve soil fertility environment, and maximize the supply of natural resources.
- Sustainment of the economic activities of agriculture systems in a country
It is not in anybody's capacity to predict the long term damages caused by the pandemic. Quarantines and panic during the Ebola Virus Disease outbreak in Sierra Leone (2014-2016), for example, led to a spike in hunger and malnutrition (fa.org).
Although we don't expect the pandemic to last for too long, the best practice we can do while we wait for the pandemic to be over is to prepare ourselves for the worse by making the most out of on-farm resources to scale up food production. We can achieve this by funding the farmers, farmlands, and investing in agribusiness. To be better prepared is safer than been sorry in the long run.