Vice farmers in Sokoto State have said they lost an estimated 61,197.5 tonnes of rice valued at N27.5 billion due to floods this cropping season.
The state Chairman of Rice Farmers Association of Nigeria (RIFAN), Alhaji Ibrahim Salihu, spoke yesterday during his visits to some of the affected farms.
Salihu said the flood affected 19,000 rice farmers across the 23 local government areas of the state.
He said: “Based on the estimates, the cultivated farms’ yields lost to floods are 61,197.5 tonnes, because farms were submerged by rainwater and crops destroyed before harvest.
“The yields lost are 3,059,875 bags, but if converted to money, each bag of 100 kilogrammes is N9,000 at the open market. Therefore, at least about N27,538,879,000 was lost.”
The chairman said the 27,853 farmers registered under the RIFAN/CBN Anchor Borrower Programme in the state had cultivated 17,485 hectares of rice at various sites.
Salihu said farm inputs were distributed to the farmers according to the hectares they applied for, with a hectare attracting N205,100.
According to him, based on estimates, each hectare will yield between 3.5 to 4 tonnes of paddy rice.
The chairman said the farmers had contacted the Nigerian Agricultural Insurance Company (NAIC) for remedy.
Salihu urged the Federal Government to consider the plight of the affected farmers and support them with dry season farming incentives to enable them recoup their losses.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that officials of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Unity Bank Plc, the Federal Ministry of Agriculture, the Nigerian Agricultural Insurance Corporation (NAIC) and RIFAN National President, Alhaji Aminu Goronyo, were part of the inspection team.
Areas visited by the team included Goronyo Dam, Takakume, Falaliya, Lakoba and Wurno Rice Farms.