With more than 200 million inhabitants in 2019, Nigeria is the most populated country on the African continent and one of the fastest growing economies in the world. Agriculture constitutes an important sector of the economy of Nigeria employing about three quarters of the population. The sector contributes to 22-25% of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP).
The Nigerian National requirement for maize is estimated at about 16 million tons. With production around 10.3 million tons in 2013, supply deficit is about 5.7 million tons.
Maize is the second largest consumed grain after rice in Nigeria. But some major constraints heavily weigh on the quality of maize production in Nigeria such as limited research and development, inadequate awareness and understanding of the need to use good quality crop protection products (CPPs), unfavorable government policies regarding local production of CPPs and the high cost of same. Next to that, a major challenge stakeholders complain about is the lack of synergy and coordination in the sector.
In the 2SCALE’s sector transformation principles, the key constraints mentioned constitute a critical bottleneck for the development of the maize sector in Nigeria while affecting simultaneously all the stakeholders.To address these constraints, a workshop was organized in Abuja, Nigeria to engage stakeholders in the sector to review, share ideas and develop an implementable and demand driven grain quality standards for maize and similar cereals in Nigeria.