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Monday, September 25, 2023

Partnership to educate farmers on use of GM cowpea technology

The African Agricultural Technology Foundation (AATF) is collaborating with the National Agricultural Extension and Research Liaison Services (NAERLS) to provide useful and timely information to farmers across Nigeria on the appropriate use of the PBR Cowpea technology.


The PBR Cowpea (SAMPEA 20-T), a genetically modified cowpea variety, developed by the Institute for Agricultural Research, Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) in Zaria, was officially named, registered and approved in Nigeria in December 2019 for onward release to farmers for cultivation.

The signed agreement between AATF and the ABU-based NAERLS for the implementation of the collaboration noted that both organisations would bring their expertise and wealth of experience to bear in the training of farmers and extension workers across the country.

It also said that, with the technical support of Institute for Agricultural Research in Zaria and AATF, NAERLS is expected to coordinate extension services and develop training modules that target relevant players in the cowpea value chain across the country.

Prof. Emmanuel Ikani, Technical Coordinator, AATF-NAERLS collaboration, noted: “The agreement entails the development of modules, training of 600 extension agents and 6,000 farmers on the appropriate use of the PBR Cowpea technology.

“NAERLS on the strengths of its capabilities and experience as an agricultural extension research and liaison services has the capacity and equipment for effective service delivery in core activities of Extension services, Research and Training and will be able to deliver the expected outputs in this agreement.”

NAERLS will also develop and disseminate audience participatory gender sensitive e-extension services using the National Farmers helpline and social media platforms to deploy PBR cowpea information.

Other responsibilities to be undertaken by NAERLS include the development and management of youth-friendly, gender sensitive radio and TV programmes as well as multi-media packages to increase awareness and promote adoption of PBR Cowpea.

NAERLS, according to the agreement, will also facilitate the development and dissemination of simple, user-friendly extension support publications that will provide the public the right information on PBR Cowpea.

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