Rice is one of the most popular food in Nigeria, Nigerians consume almost 7 million tonnes of it a year. That’s a lot of rice, and in order to keep up with demand, huge amounts of the grain are imported into the country. But it’s not alone – according to the African Development Bank, about $35bn is spent on food imports annually across the continent. This is despite the fact that Africa is home to two-thirds of the world’s most arable uncultivated land.
According to data from Nigeria’s National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), the amount of money the country has been spending on importing food and drink increased from 2015 to 2017, dipped in 2018 and if the trend from the first quarter of this year continues, the bill will go up again for this year. In 2015, Nigeria spent nearly $2.9bn (£2.4bn) and by 2017 that had risen to $4.1bn, the NBS says.
The implication of this is that we need all hands on deck to feed the teeming population. Say, for instance, you don’t want to get your hands dirty but you love agriculture, come invest with Farmbuddy, you feed the nation and also grow your pocket. Farming has now become a necessity, it can no longer be done by people who are genuinely interested in agriculture, it has now become an obligation for all of us to invest in it.