Agricultural and Rural Management Training Institute (ARMTI), Ilorin, Kwara state on Tuesday organized a free one-day training programme on agribusiness for members of Correspondents’ Chapel of the state Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ).
The programme, which was part of annual Press Week celebration of the chapel of the NUJ, was aimed at training journalists on sustainable agribusiness during and after service.
Speaking during the programme, the executive director of the institute, Dr. Olufemi Oladunni, said that agriculture is no longer an hobby but business.
Dr. Oladunni, who said that prevalent high price of food items in the country could be favourably addressed when every family produces 30 per cent of what is produced, said that every professional should engage in agribusiness.
“If you don’t go to market for some certain food items, the prices would go down. That’s what agric does for you and me. Civil servants, journalists and every other professionals should combine agribusiness with what they do. We should not even give excuse of not having land to cultivate farming nowadays as soiless cultivation can be done. I can only charge the government to ensure that it lowers cost of inputs like fertilizers and ensure quality of agric inputs like seeds”, he said.
The ARMTI boss, who said that crime-free society is not achievable, added that Nigeria can achieve reduction in crime, especially, among youths when they are engaged in agricultural production and agribusiness.
On the problem of insecurity, Oladunni advised government across board to engage the restive youths in productive ventures such as agriculture and agribusinesses.
For its part, he said ARMTI has been engaging in the training of youths in various areas of agribusiness to make them not only self- employed but employers of labour.
Oladunni added that at the end of the training programmes, ARMTI also provided starters packs valued at N200,000 to each of the beneficiaries to enable them start their own businesses.
He said the institute was created to domesticate agricultural management among people involving in agribusiness in their different locations, adding that the management has decided to take ARMTI close to people in the six geopolitical zones of the country in such locations as Rivers, Ibadan, Kano, Abia as well as Bauchi.
Participants at the training programme were taken through agribusiness identification and selection, technical and management skills required to engage in agribusiness among other aspects to ensure productivity.