Before the menace of the coronavirus, food crisis has been a major global concern. As it relates to the food crisis, the pandemic has worsened the innate reality of food crisis. The lockdown and interstate border closures which were part of the government response to the pandemic have led to a hike in food prices. Before the pandemic, the Nigerian government banned the importation of some staple food items to protect local industries and boost the local production.
THE OUT -TURN OF CRISIS ON THE PRODUCTION OF CASSAVA
Nigeria is the world’s largest producer of the cassava, accounting to about one-fifth (21%) of total production worldwide. Cassava is a very important food crop that is capable of providing food security. However, a lot of problems have prevented the development and use of modern technology for its production.
The demand for cassava and its constituents is high in the domestic economy, and the supply has been unable to meet the huge demand. For instance, the supply -demand gap for High Quality cassava flour stands at about 485,000 metric tons [MT] per annum while the gap for Cassava starch is about 290,000 metric tons.
Nigeria is the world leading producer of cassava with production output of 291MT as of 2017, of which Africa accounted for over 60%. Nigeria produced 59MT making it the world’s largest producer [approximately 20% of global production] with a 37% increase in the last decade.
However, due to lack of infrastructure, modern logistics, and technology, only about 40% of fresh cassava roots are processed into finished product which are mainly cassava flour and cassava starch.
Cassava yields vary with cultivars, season of planting, soil type and fertility. With improved varieties and under good management practices, they can reach 20 to 25 tons per hectare.
Under the most prevalent farming method, cassava yields are much lower. Low cassava yields relative to their potential also reflect the influence of subsistence production systems, which are mainly geared to provide a safety net, in case of cereal crop shortfalls. Rarely is cassava cultivated as a mono- culture. Although cassava is commonly recognized as subsistence crop, there is growing evidence that it is an important cash-earner for most producers and that the marketed share of output often exceeds that of cereals. Cassava contains high level of protein in the roots and this is relevant for the feed industries and obviously, to improve nutritional status of human populations.
A WAY OUT OF THIS CRISIS
An increase in the production of cassava to sustain world food security needs improved machinery allow its continuous cultivation and processing. This can also eradicate or reduce poverty nationwide. An increase in the production, supply and a decrease in inflation can increase the demand which can help make food accessible to all. High value cassava is, therefore, no longer a dream but a reality that will have a positive livelihood of cassava farmers but in the scientific community, cassava offers a wealth of professional opportunities to young scientists.
When it comes to the world of investing, three words come to mind; overwhelming, intimidating and scary but Investing in cassava is an opportunity we can indulge in since about 70% of our foods are cassava products. By investing with us at CassavaCash, you not only achieve financial freedom but also save the world from food crisis.
Last updated 4 months ago