The National Dialogue on Organic Agriculture Policy was held today the 16th of December 20212 and in his opening speech, the Honourable Minister of Agriculture and Rural development Dr Abubakar Mahmood Muhammed ably represented by the Director of Agricultural Land & Climate Change Engr. S.T. Bello stated that the practice of organic agriculture in an organized manner is relatively new in the country and about 70 percent of the Nigerian farmers think they practice organic agriculture but true organics is a certified production method that is yet to be widely understood by Nigerian farmers. With a vast landmass, conducive climate, and large population of over 200 million, Nigeria is well-suited to excel in organic agriculture especially also as the major natural inputs needed including plant residues, poultry, and livestock waste, biogas residue, and agricultural by-products are readily available locally.

He informed the audience that the Ministry is presently focusing on unlocking the enormous potentials that abound in organic agriculture, as well as its adoption for sustainability of soil nutrients and fertility, especially in those areas where the agricultural land falls within the Savannah and Sahel Zones that are characterized by inherent low soil fertility. Our ultimate goal in this area is to increase agricultural productivity, earn foreign exchange, alleviate poverty, and improve on the rural economies, and job creation.

He thanked the stakeholders and everyone present for their participation and wished all a rewarding national organic dialogue

The Director Farm Input Support Services Department(FISSD) Engr. Tunde Bello while delivering his keynote address re-echoed the increasing clarion calls from stakeholders for the development of an appropriate policy to guide and regulate Organic Agriculture operations in Nigeria which has received the necessary attention. The Ministry working with its relevant Departments namely: The Farm Inputs Support Services (FISS), the Federal Department of Agriculture (FDA), Animal Husbandry Services (AHS), Planning and Policy Coordination (P&PC), Food and Strategic Reserve (FSR), Agricultural Land Resources and Climate Change (ALR&CC) and the Office of the Permanent Secretary, has articulated the Ministry’s position with regards to Organic Agriculture and the policy document is ready for review and adoption.

Among the various stakeholders who delivered their goodwill messages were the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, The Chairman House Committee on Agriculture & Rural Development, the Honourable Minister of Health, Honourable Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Honourable Mnister of Environmnet, MD North EDast Development , the Chairman Organic Fertlizer Producers $ Suppliers Association of Nigeria, CEO Herlin, Honourable Commissioners of Agriculture, EOA Initiative, Africa Union etc.