The Federal Government has commenced the planting of 2,000 cashew seedlings to kick start the 2016 cashew planting season and Cashew Expansion Programme in Ife, Osun State, Nigeria.
The Federal Government commenced the programme in line with its goal of reviving the agriculture sector and creating jobs for the youths,
The Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Audu Ogbeh, who flagged off the programme in Ogudu Village in Ife, Osun State said the government is determined to build the future of Nigeria by reviving cashew farming to make it earn more foreign exchange.
The Minister assured that the government will roll out two million cashew seedlings annually to sustain the programme.
Speakers at the event harped on the need for all to return to the farm especially the youths to help revive the sector as well as provide and create jobs for the unemployed.
Governor Rauf Aregbesola and others spoke about the health and financial benefits derivable from planting cashew should be the driving force to sustain the programme.
Mr Ogbeh re-affirmed the readiness of the Buhari – led administration to improve the lives of Nigerians through agriculture.
He assured that a cocoa and banana plantation programme will also be unveiled very soon .
The Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi, while speaking blamed the nation’s ailing economy on the total abandonment of agriculture, stressing that agriculture remains the largest employer of labour in the world.
The cashew plant is expected to begin to yield it’s fruits three years from now.
The event was graced by several traditional rulers, officials of the Bank of Industry and the Bank of Agriculture and a delegation from the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.