HomeOpinionUnderstanding The Business Aspect Of Agriculture- By Ibekwe Nnamdi C

Understanding The Business Aspect Of Agriculture- By Ibekwe Nnamdi C

It is fascinating to observe how global trends continually shape various aspects of human existence, including technology, science, medicine, and agriculture.

These changes often herald positive outcomes for humanity, signifying progress across different domains.

Agriculture, in particular, has undergone significant transformations worldwide. From traditional subsistence farming to mechanised industrial practices and export-oriented approaches, the sector has evolved into a multi-billion-dollar business.

Nigeria, and indeed the entire Southeast region, cannot afford to be left behind in this agricultural revolution.Some key success factors have contributed to the remarkable advancements in the agricultural sector. Successful countries recognise that treating agriculture as a business is essential.

They adopt and adapt business-oriented mechanisms to measure progress and profitability. High-level planning, calibrated output matrices, and knowledge-driven processes play a crucial role in achieving sustainable growth. Incremental evaluation and feedback ensure continuous improvement.

Some countries like China, India, the United States, and Brazil have become global leaders in agriculture, exemplifying the essence of planning and business acumen in agriculture. China, in particular, has strategically focused on its agricultural value chains.

By treating agriculture as a business, China surpassed the United States and the European Union to become the world’s leading exporter of agricultural products in 2019. On the whole, the shift toward viewing agriculture as a business has propelled countries to unprecedented levels of success. By embracing planning with professional approaches, and continuous improvement, nations can thrive in this vital sector.

Enabling the Business of Agriculture project assesses laws and regulations related to agriculture, aiming to identify actionable reforms that remove obstacles for farmers seeking to grow their businesses in the area of seed supply by examining laws and regulations related to timely seed release for domestic farmers.

Other are assessing regulations that help farmers to access high-quality fertilizers, addressing water-related regulations as well as analysing regulatory processes that impact agricultural machinery use. In the area of sustaining livestock, entails evaluating regulations affecting livestock farming input, and examining phytosanitary legislation to prevent pests and diseases and laws facilitating agricultural product trade and exports.

Another important aspect is accessing financial regulations relevant to the agricultural sector. The overarching goal is to facilitate agribusiness operations in a socially and environmentally responsible manner. By enabling agribusinesses, they can provide essential inputs and services to farmers, potentially increasing productivity and profits. Policymakers and stakeholders in Africa however face several challenges in ensuring food security for all; focusing on non-farm rural and non-agricultural sectors to reduce youth unemployment; and building resilience against natural and man-made shocks (e.g., droughts, floods, conflicts, and price fluctuations).

In summary, understanding the regulatory landscape and fostering a conducive environment for agribusinesses are crucial for sustainable agricultural development.Nigeria can learn from these global success stories to provide valuable insights by investing in Research and Development (R&D). Successful countries prioritize Research and Development (R&D) in agriculture.

Nigeria should allocate resources to research institutions, universities, and private companies to enable them to develop innovative solutions to solve problems associated with agriculture. This may also require collaboration with international partners to share knowledge and access cutting-edge technologies.Nigeria should encourage young entrepreneurs to be encouraged to venture into agribusiness by providing training, mentorship, and financial support.

An enabling environment should be created for startups by simplifying registration processes and offering incentives.Improving infrastructure development in the area of transportation networks, storage facilities, and irrigation systems to reduce post-harvest losses and ensure timely delivery to markets. In short, the entire agricultural value chain, from production to processing, distribution, and marketing should be strengthened while linkages between farmers, processors, and retailers to enhance efficiency and profitability should be encouraged.

The right policies should also be formulated to adapt to climate change by promoting drought-resistant crops, efficient water management, and sustainable practices. The government should invest in renewable energy for farming operations.The government should facilitate access to credit for smallholder farmers and agribusinesses by encouraging microfinance institutions and digital platforms to play a crucial role.

It should also develop risk-sharing mechanisms to encourage lending to smallholder farmers and should review and update agricultural policies to align with global best practices. It should also address land tenure issues, simplify land acquisition, and ensure secure property rights.Farmers should be trained in modern techniques, pest management, and soil health.

The government should also strengthen extension services to disseminate knowledge and provide technical support. In addition, government and corporate bodies should collaborate to explore international markets for Nigerian agricultural products and establish quality standards and certifications to meet global requirements to avoid rejections of produce. In this regard, there is also a need for collaboration with private sector players, non-governmental organizations organisations (NGOs), and research institutions.

The government should leverage the expertise, resources, and networks for sustainable growth.All these are achievable only if we can learn from successful countries by adopting a holistic approach, embracing innovation, and fostering collaboration across sectors. Hon. Ibekwe Nnamdi Chimdi is the lawmaker representing Bende North constituency, Abia State House of Assembly.



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