Wheat Farmers Association of Nigeria has appealed to Federal Government to address issues associated with high cost of farm inputs to enable farmers to increase productivity.
The National President of the association, Alhaji Abdullahi Arugungu, made the appeal in interview on Friday in Abuja.
Arugungu said high cost of inputs was the major reason for the high cost of production and high price of wheat in the country.
He noted that the problem discouraged most farmers as they were going out of business.
Arugungu, who said that wheat farmers across the country were also faced with the challenge of how to sell their produce, appealed to state governments to off-take and buy back wheat produced by farmers.
He added that “government should address the cost of inputs in the country like fertiliser and other chemicals.
“We can also grow wheat the way we grow rice because wheat can grow anywhere but wheat cultivation is very low.
“This is because wheat farming inputs are expensive and farmers have problem getting market for the produce. We need government to off-take.
“A bag of wheat seed is about N15,000 and a bag of wheat is also N15,000 and whatever business you are doing, you need to make gain.
“Government should evolve machinery to off-take all the wheat produced by Nigerian farmers.”
On inability of some CBN’s Anchor Borrower Programme (ABP) beneficiaries to repay the loans, Argungu appealed to government to spread out the loans to enable farmers to pay back easily.
The national president said the association had organised an awareness and training programme for farmers to educate them on the need to repay loans to enable others to benefit from the gesture.