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Sweet potato farming catches on in Jigawa, Nigeria
Farmers in Jigawa State, Nigeria will soon start competing in the cultivation of sweet potatoes with their counterparts in other states that have been in the production of the crop for a while now. About 5,000 farmers from the state have engaged in sweet potato production this year.
Although sweet potato is a common crop across the North, it was not widely cultivated in the state until about a year or two ago when some farmers gave it a try and to their amazement recorded bumper harvest.
However, due to poor knowledge in the production of the crop, most farmers, especially in Birnin Kudu Local Government Area, believed that their farmlands lacked the correct type of soil for its production hence sweet potato was not among the crops cultivated in the area.
With no formal training for the farmers to enable them know if their farmlands are fertile for the cultivation of the crop or not, many steered clear of it until few tried it and the yield was encouraging.
Production of sweet potato in the state will not only improve the economic and social status of the farmers, but will also help to stop the menace of migration of youths to cities and other places in search of menial jobs at the end of the farming season, as the crop could be produced three times a year.
There are indications that the production of the crop will keep increasing considering the level at which consumption is equally increasing.
Publication date: 9/12/2017
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