The Lagos State Agro-Processing, Productivity Enhancement and Livelihood Improvement Support (APPEALS), a World Bank assisted project, has commenced the training of livestock farmers on nipple fitted drinker and pelletised feeds for broiler production.
The training which was began on Oct. 8, at Creative Farms Ltd, Ikorodu, Lagos State, was to demonstrate the profitability of new technologies in the livestock space and deep litter system to improve farmers livelihoods.
Mrs Oluranti Oviebor, the State Project Coordinator of APPEALS, said that the demonstration focused on good feed, introduction of nipple fitted drinkers to control and reduce diseases.
Oviebor said that it was to educate farmers to do it right and apply best agricultural practices to enhance their productive ability, especially after the closure of the border by the Federal Government.
According to her, the border closure is to improve consumption of locally produced poultry products as well as to increase production of home-grown livestock products.
“We need to appreciate the Federal Government for closing the border and it will not be too much to ask that the border remained closed.
“This step has increased local production and consumption of chicken. We also need to look beyond production of broilers only for festive seasons but to breed chicken all year round.
“We understand that an enterprise is sustainable when there is a market for the product, if we continue to allow import of poultry products, our farmers will not be encouraged to produce.
“This demonstration is to educate farmers to apply best practices, to introduce bio-security and increase their interest in new technologies available,’’ she said.
Oviebor also urged the farmers to step-down whatever was learnt to the smaller units of the farmers’ clusters.
“We cannot get all farmers to be at the capacity building but we expect that those of you here should go back to your different clusters to introduce what you have learned.
“In another five to six weeks, we will all return here to see how well the birds from day-old fared, in size and weight, in the nipple fitter drinkers compared to other drinking systems.
“Then those interested to adopt the system will be assisted with input appropriately,’’ Oviebor said.
The SPC also said that there should be regulations in feed production as well as specialisation across the value chain instead of a farmers to be involved in production, feed milling and marketing at the same time.
Dr Ayodele Tinubu, a facilitator at the training revealed that the nipple fitted drinkers was more affordable compared to the bell-shaped drinking system.
Tinubu urged farmers to adopt it since it was cost effective to manage, especially since they would only concern themselves with the source of water rather than fighting diseases resulting from wet pens.
Mr Taofik Sulaimon, Vice-Chairman of the Poultry Association of Nigeria (PAN), Ikorodu Zone, however, asked APPEALS to consider providing motherhood cleaners for the pipes of the nipple fitter drinkers.
Mr Olufemi Samuel, the General Secretary of PAN, Lagos State chapter, said that farmers should be careful with what was adopted per farm because there were peculiarities that each farm possessed and what works for farm A might not work for farm B.
Mr Balogun Idris, Productive Enhanced Specialist of APPEALS, urged farmers to be ready to accept new technologies that would increase their income and ease production processes.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the farmers were selected from different zones in the state and the training marked the beginning of implementation of the projects core activities.
NAN also reports that APPEALS is a six-year project from 2018 to 2023 to provide modern farming inputs to farmers who had spent a minimum of three years in any of the value chains of aquaculture, rice and livestock.
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