The Kano State Government has disclosed plans to boost animal feed production in the state.
The Kano State Agro-Pastoral Development Project (KSADP) said it would achieve this through its new partnership with the National Animal Production Research Institute (NAPRI) of the Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria.
KSADP Livestock specialist, Dr Garba Saleh, reached the agreement with NAPRI during a visit to its Executive Director, Prof. Abdullahi K. Muhammad.
Speaking during the visit, Saleh noted that KSADP needed the support of NAPRI in specific areas like seed and pasture development.
The specialist explained that collaboration is important to fostering animal productivity in the state.
He added that the collaboration would help to enhance KSADP’s previous productivity projects such as vaccination, land allocation and dairy improvement schemes.
According to Saleh, the project aims to promote three fodder varieties: Stylo, Napier grass and Gamba so as to drive milk production.
He said, “At KSADP, we realised that sustainable livestock development is seriously affected by the insufficiency of fodder, so there is the need to focus attention on its development.
“Quality fodder seeds ensure an increase in fodder production leading to improved milk production and reduced feeding cost for herdsmen.
“In addition, if sufficient fodder is available within our environment, seasonal migration and its attendant consequences like cattle rustling, farmer-herder clashes etc will drastically be reduced.”
Saleh further noted that KSADP will also engage the private investors, including smallholder investors, particularly those within the dairy production catchment areas.
“Just recently, the Kano State government approved 1,000 hectares of land for lease for commercial, large scale animal fodder production under our project and this will enable us to start our investment in commercial large scale fodder production, in partnership with the private sector,” he said.
In his reaction, Muhammad reiterated NAPRI’s willingness to support the Project. He also assured of its readiness to lend any other support within the institute’s mandate.
Kano State Governor, Abdullahi Ganduje launched the $95 million KSADP in February 2020 to fast-track agricultural activities and food security programmes.
The five-year-long project is being financed by the Islamic Development Bank (IsDB) and the Life and Livelihoods Fund (LLF).
Speaking during the launch of the project at Tahir Guest Palace, Kano, Ganduje had explained that the scheme was aimed at contributing towards poverty reduction.
The scheme also sought to strengthen Kano State’s food security through the development of agro-pastoral production systems in the state, the governor had said.