The Minister of State for Agriculture and Rural Development, Senator Heineken Lokpobiri, has charged agricultural research institutes in the country to embrace commercialisation of their research and agricultural products to boost their internally generated revenue (IGR) to ensure the sustainability of the institutes.
The Minister gave this charge while undertaking a two-day facility tour of the three research institutes domiciled in the Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) Zaria namely: InstituteA� Agricultural Research (IAR), National Agricultural Extension Research and Liaison Services (NAERLS) and the National Animal Production Research Institute (NAPRI).
He said commercialization of the institutes has become imperative as government alone cannot continue to provide the required funding for the institutes and consequently urged the managements of the institutes to partner with Donor Agencies to support them in this regard.
According to him, a�?if you dona��t commercialize, you cannot maximize your potentialsa�?
The Minister commended the achievements of the institutes despite challenges faced over the years and emphasized the need for further investment in research and manpower development to enable the country achieve self-sufficiency in food production.
Lokpobiri assured of President Muhammadu Buharia��s commitment to revitalize the agricultural sector and his determination to continue to support farmers through provision of agricultural inputs such as fertilizers, herbicides, pesticides and farm implements including tractors.
The Executive Director NAPRI Professor Clarence Lakpini, informed the Minister that plans were under way to partner with the private sector such as the Bank of Agriculture (BOA), UAC Foods and Alar Foods through the mobilization of clusters of farmers to drive the commercialization process.