Wet season farmers in Gombe decry high cost of inputs

According to him, farmers have never found it so difficult buying inputs.

 

With the commencement of wet season farming, many farmers in Gombe State have decried the high cost of agricultural inputs.

The farmers expressed their concerns in separate interviews with the News Agency of Nigeria  (NAN) on Wednesday in Gombe.

Alhaji Musa Arab, a large scale rice farmer, said that farmers were now worried about the prices of fertiliser and other inputs.

According to him, farmers have never found it so difficult buying inputs.

Arab stated that if nothing was done about the prices of inputs,  Gombe farmers’ capacity to engage in large scale farming would be reduced.

He said that many farmers were forced to take loans to embark on farming this wet season, not knowing if the rains would be enough to give them good harvest.

Mr Bitrus Zaccheaus, a farmer from Billiri community, said that the high cost of inputs would affect productivity as many farmers were forced to reduce the size of the farmland often cultivated by them.

Zacchaeus said agricultural inputs such as improved seeds, fertilisers and pesticides were now more expensive.

He stated that he was forced to “cut down on the quantity of fertilisers, seeds and chemicals which he said were critical to successful crop production.”

Alhaji Ibrahim Na-Bingi, a farmer in Deba community, said many farmers, who cleared their farmlands, could not cultivate them in view of the high cost of inputs.

Na-Bingi appealed for support for farmers in the state, adding “it is not too late for the government to still support farmers in Gombe State to cultivate more crops this year.”

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“If this is not done, many farmers may become poor because they would have spent a lot to farm and may not get as much returns on their investments.”

Others who spoke to NAN from Nafada Local Government Area also shared the same experience while calling for urgent support.

NAN reports that the prices of fertilisers at the Gombe main market have increased  compared to the previous year.

PK 15-15-15 (50kg) that was sold for between N15, 000 and N18, 000 now sells for between N25,000 and N31, 000 depending on their quality.

Urea (50kg) which was sold for between N11,000 and N11, 500 the previous year, now sells for between N19, 000 and N19, 500.

Also, 4kg of improve maize seed which was sold for N750, now sells for N2, 500; 1kg of improved rice seed increased from N1,200 to N1,700.

 

 

(NAN)

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