By Dipo Olowookere
The 2550 hectares of land secured for farming activities by the Kwara State government under its Off-takers Demand Driven Agriculture (ODDA) scheme have been oversubscribed by youth farmers in the state.
This information was revealed by Commissioner for Agriculture, Mr Bamidele Adegoke, in Ilorin, the state capital.
Mr Adegoke expressed delight that more youth were showing interest in agriculture, adding that people need to consider agriculture as a business venture.
The Commissioner also clarified that the state government was not acquiring land from communities for the estate farm development, but collaborating with communities that are willing to provide land for farming activities.
He listed the communities where the government had secured land for the estate farms to include Oke-oyi, Ejidongari, Esie, Agbamu, Reke, Malete, Alateko, Ekan, Ballah, Isin, Share, Shonga, Bode-Saadu and Owode-Ofaro.
The Commissioner said over 1000 farmers are targeted to be empowered and settled on the estate farms, adding that women and unemployed youths would be given priority.
According to him, the Estate Farm initiative is unique because it ensures ease of administration, monitoring and allows the government to ensure adequate security for the farmers and their farm produce.
He added that the farmers enjoy subsidies on land clearing and land preparation, which eventually brings down the cost of production.
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