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By Obinna Unaeze
The Agro-Processors Association of Nigeria has called on the Federal Government to subsidise the price of high yield cassava cuttings to ensure a reduction in the price of garri.
Niger state Chairman of the association, Malam Jamiu Lawal, made the call in Minna on Friday in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN).
Lawal said that the measure would reverse the current price of garri from N400 per kilogramme to N150 per kilogramme.
‘‘We want the Federal Government to assist us by subsidising the price of cassava stems to enable farmers reduce the prices of cassava and garri,’’ he said.
He noted that a bundle of cassava cuttings (stems) which was sold for N300 now sells for N500.
The chairman also said that some months ago two tonnes of cassava was sold for N30,000 but now it is selling for N140,000.
He said this increase had impacted on the prices of all the by-products of cassava.
Lawal appealed to government to assist farmers with other inputs such as fertilisers and herbicides in order to ensure increase in cassava production.
He also urged the government to subsidise and facilitate farmers’ access to tractors, processing machine and equipment to attract youths to farming.
The chairman disclosed that the association had started the production of high quality cassava flour, cassava chips and camavita (semovita equivalent).