The President of Agricultural and Allied Employees Union of Nigeria (AAEUN) in Kwara State, Comrade Kehinde Ehindero has said yam exportation will expand vista of farmers in Nigeria.
The Federal Government had on June 29, 2017 flagged off yam exportation at Apapa Port Lagos and the produce were exported in three containers of 24 tonnes each to Europe and United States of America.
However, critics have condemned the policy saying that yam production is still at consumption level in Nigeria.
Speaking to Pilot Business on Tuesday, he said, ” The direct effect of this exportation is a wake up call to farmers to cultivate more yams because of the competition in the exportation and domestic requirement.
“It is a way of encouraging farmers to cultivate more so that they can make money because they are not third class citizens. Therefore, the criticism is uncalled for.
“Farmers have the potentials and they are going to be the millionaires in the next generation.
“Anybody criticising the new development in the agricultural sector is not sincere and an enemy of agricultural practitioners and farmers.
“They are trying to limit agricultural activities to just the local markets whereas agriculture is becoming a more lucrative business,” he added.
On the lack of storage facilities for farm produce, while noting that it poses as major challenge to farmers, he suggested that government at all levels should assist farmers by providing off-takers for their harvests.
Ehindero lamented that the Federal Government storage institutions are not doing enough in terms of educating farmers on storage facilities.
He said, “Farmers will always want to sell their produce immediately but when the need for storage arises, we want the government to play their part through enlightenment and supporting farmers with storage facilities.”