According to the National Root Crops Research Institute, Nigeria accounts for over 70 per cent of yams produced in the world. Dr Nnamdi Eke-Okoro, Director/HOD, Crop Research Operations Department, NRCRI, stated this in a presentation at a stakeholders’ workshop in Abuja on Wednesday, on Repositioning Yam as an Export Crop. He said Nigeria is the leading producer of yam, cassava and sweet potato with 34, 59, and 30 metric tons respectively.
Dr Eke-Okoro said to move into global standard, there must be collaboration between the ports authority and other stakeholders in the country: "NRCRI can collaborate with other agencies to speed up the yam export chain and to reduce the level of rejections of our products abroad.”
Eke-Okoro said the importance of NRCRI in the yam export chain could not be over-emphasized. According to the researcher, foreign markets are yearning for yams and are gradually expanding their ranges. Nwankwo said that there must be good agronomic practices for sustenance and an acceptance that we should reposition yam as an export crop.