To boost rice and cassava production, the Federal Government in collaboration with the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), has presented equipment worth millions of naira to farmers in Anambra State.
Presenting the items in Awka, the state Commissioner for Agriculture, Mr Afam Mbanefo, said the equipment came at the right time and would record much success towards mechanisation of food production and food security in the country.
Some of the equipment distributed under the IFAD-assisted Value Chain Development Programme (VCDP) include; seed planter, high performance ATAT thresher, parboiling tank, dryer, and parboiler power tiller.
Others are mechanical peeler/sieving machine/stainless grater and manual uprooter, small thresher, stainless manual fryer, manual press and 32ton jack, among others.
Mbanefo, represented by Permanent Secretary in the ministry, Mrs. Ngozi Onu, said the equipment would minimise labour, as well as, encourage others who were yet to embrace farming.
The State Programme Coordinator of VCDP, Mr Emmanuel Aguncha, explained that each farmer group paid 30 per cent of the actual amount for the equipment, while FG/IFAD and government contributed the remaining 70 per cent.
He appealed to the Federal Government to allow the exercise to be continuous for other farmers who are highly productive, but incapacitated to benefit.
One of the beneficiaries from Rainbow Multipurpose Cooperative Society, Omor, Mr Peter Emeka, commended government and VCDP for the presentation, assuring that the equipment would be put to good use.