Ten international seed companies are to participate in the 2018 Seed Connect Conference and Expo holding in Abuja from June 5 to June 6, an official has said.
Dr Olusegun Ojo, the Director-General, National Agricultural Seeds Council (NASC), which will co-host the event, made this known in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Sunday.
Ojo expressed the hope that the event would facilitate the development of a holistic, pragmatic and sustainable strategy for strengthening of the country’s seed industry.
He said the conference was Nigeria’s main seed industry convention with the latest information on seed treatment, plant breeding innovation, emerging global disease threats, among others.
‘‘The conference will bring together stakeholders, including donors, researchers, policy makers, development partners, academics, farmers’ organisations and industry end-users, among others.
‘‘This will improve the national economy because we will be partnering with the private sector to generate revenue for the country and farmers.
‘‘The private sector is actually the one at the driver’s seat and we, the seed regulatory body, has the responsibility to ensure that a favourable atmosphere is created for them.
‘‘We want seed stakeholders to take advantage of this golden opportunity to acquire new knowledge and innovation in seed production and management,’’ he said.
The director general, who noted that seed was the most essential link in any crop value chain, emphasised that the strength of that link could determine the strength of the entire value chain in the country.
He stated that Chief Audi Ogbeh, the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, would launch Seed Call Centre Helplines for farmers and the public at the event.
He added that the helplines – 07000073337/070000seeds – would serve as platform for addressing the issue of adulterated seeds meant for farmers in order to guarantee surplus food production in the country and encourage exportation. (NAN)