Cassava is the easiest crop to cultivate. Cassava grows with rain and survives with dews. Once it is established, it will survive whatever length of dry season. The major challenge of Cassava farming is the lack of adequate facilities for the ordinary Farmer to mechanize cultivation process, especially in the southern part of the country where tractable Farmland are not available and Tractors are grossly inadequate. An average Farmer in South Africa has about three tractors in his family, such that the farmer, wife and one of the children can work with the three tractors at the same time on the farm. A whole state in the southern part of Nigeria with a population of one million Farmers may have just fifty Tractors, 30 of which are not in working condition. The implication is that while the south African farmer can reap 50mt of Cassava from an hectare of farmland, the Nigerian counterpart will reap 12mt.
Assuming both farmers cultivated at the cost of ₦150,000.00 per hectare, cost of production of one metric ton for the south African farmer is ₦3,000.00 while the cost of the Nigerian farmer is ₦12,500.00. It has been emphasized by our Honorable Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Dr. Akinwumi Adesina that subsistence farming that we still practice in Nigeria is a real punishment and indeed a curse.
The real worry of Nigeria Cassava Growers Association is that what is required of an appropriate land clearing is beyond the entire budget of the Federal Ministry of Agriculture. There is need to clear 250,000 hectares at ₦200,000.00 per hectare in the rain and thick forest of the south. Cost of clearing includes creating blocks of five to ten hectares through demarcation and creating a fire tracing to address the menace of farm and the cattle rearers. The cost that will provide a solid foundation for the Nigerian prosperity through Cassava is “Land Clearing”. ₦30 billion in the north and ₦60 billion in the south will make 500,000 hectares available for mechanized farming.
Nigeria Cassava Growers Association was formed in 1982 by visionary leaders to bring prospect into Cassava farming in Nigeria.
These Visionary leaders laid a solid foundation on which the Association is spreading its tentacles. Nigeria Cassava Growers Association is duly registered with the Nigeria Corporate Affairs Commission.
The Nigeria Cassava Growers Associations Board of Trustees is a board made up of several members. They are namely;