UNDP-GEF trains farmers on RiceAdvice application, innovative farming

The United Nation Development Programme (UNDP) and Global Environment Facility (GEF) in partnership with Sovisage Nig. Ltd. on Monday began a two-day training on RiceAdvice and weed manager application.

The Project Manager, Resilient Food Security Project, Mrs Rhoda Dia said the training was in line with the mandate of the project.

Dia said the mandate is to enhance long-term sustainability and resilience of food production systems in Nigeria.

The two days training was organised to train agricultural extension agents and lead farmers on the use of ICT in connecting smallholder farmers to information network and innovative farming.

She said that the recent revolution in information and communication technology had made it possible to develop decision-support tools for farmers.

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Dia said the tools could guide them to make informed decisions to improve their production and increase their productivity.

Dr Nathaniel George, Executive Director of Sonvisage Nig. Ltd. said that the app was a free android based science backed crop management decision-support tool developed by the Africa Rice Centre.

George appealed to farmers, extension workers, traders, agricultural entrepreneurs, private sector, and development agencies interested to use the app to receive expert advice for rice production.

He said the app was an interactive tool that did not require an internet connection to provide answers on multiple choice questions on farm conditions, crop management practices and market.

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“Rice Advice can identify the best choice of fertilisers to be purchased, their amounts and application timing, based on nutrient requirement and fertiliser prices,’’ George said.

According to him, the overall success factor of the RiceAdvice app was to sustainably intensify rice-based farming systems, increasing productivity for rural farmers.

Newsmen report that the UNDP-GEF-FGN-FS project is collaborating with Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development to implement a 5-year project to foster food security.

The overall goal of the project is to enhance long-term sustainability and build greater community resilience to climate risks and other shocks that drive food insecurity.

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