Agriculture and Rural Management Training Institute (ARMTI) said the
use of cassava leaves as livestock feed would reduce crop
farmers/herdsmen clashes in the country.
acting Executive Director of ARMTI, Dr Olufemi Oladunni, told the News
Agency of Nigeria in Abuja on Tuesday that unlocking the
potentialities of cassava leaves in the production of livestock feed
would be a massive step forward in the sector.Oladunni
said “it was unfortunate that the conflict between farmers and herdsmen
had caused so much losses that could have been avoided if stakeholders
in the sector had considered the other potentialities of the cassava
Minister of Agriculture mandated the institute to carry out a research
on cassava to identify the benefits of using cassava leaves as livestock
feed and to develop the cassava leaf value chain.
benefits of cassava leaves are enormous in terms of improving our
livestock production mainly in the area of more proteins for our animals
especially the ruminant ones.The problem on ground is how to feed the cattle.That
is why we have been having crisis; the herdsman wants to feed his
animals with plants and on the other hand, the crop farmer is the owner
of that resource.
How do we balance the two?
One of the ways is the cassava lifting we are trying to advocate.
Over time, we have neglected the other components of cassava as a crop especially the leaves that have been wasting away.’’Oladunni said cassava leaves could serve as a good source of revenue for a crop farmer and a provider of jobs.He said the institute would hold a seminar on Nov. 24 to rub minds and see how cassava could be eaten as hay.He said the institute would also propose a livestock feed mill where such feed could be packaged and sold in markets.He said, “Nigeria
has not focused on it as a nation and that is why we are bringing it to
the fore to see how we can develop it as a value chain and as a source
a new feed resource for livestock would lead to a reduction in the
spate of conflict between crop farmers and herdsmen, these are the areas
the seminar will touch on.’’Prof.
Dolapo Lufadeju, the Managing Director, Lufarmco Investment, a
consultant to the institute, said Nigeria had not been able to move from
pastorialism to domesticating cattle due to lack of feed.Lufadeju
said pastorialaism had been all over the world especially in countries
such as the U.K, America, and Russia in time past.He
said it was after such countries had developed their livestock industry
into a business that they began to domesticate cattle.He said they succeeded because they had all the feed their cattle needed.“Here
we don’t have anything on which our cattle are based upon and
development is fast catching up with the system of pastorialism.“That is the reason for the conflict between farmers and herdsmen.“What we are looking at is a major cattle industry that needs to be developed as a business.“Crop production has advanced, but nothing has happened in terms of development of livestock in this country,’’ he added.