An agricultural expert, Sotonye Anga, has estimated that N12 trillion would be required to feed Nigerians by 2050, when its population would have hit 340 million people.
Mr Anga, who is the Coordinator of Community of Agricultural Stakeholders of Nigeria (CASON), made the prediction Thursday in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria in Lagos.
According to him, Nigeria presently spends N17 billion to feed its population of 170 million.
He anticipated that in the next 35, years Nigeria’s population would double, adding that 340 million people would need to be fed.
“Every Nigerian spends an average of N100 per day, meaning that they spend N17 billion every day, which translates to N510 billion every month and N6.2 trillion annually.
“Nigerians will eat every day, irrespective of any situation, and by 2050, our population will double to 340 million.
“As the population increases, our national food spending will rise to N12 trillion.
“We, therefore, need a fundamental shift in government policy in favour of agriculture,’’ Mr Anga, who is also the National Publicity Secretary of the National Cashew Association of Nigeria (NCAN), said.
He stressed the need for government to grow what was required to feed the growing population, through effective agricultural policy.
According to him, if Nigeria produces N6 trillion worth of food and consume same, it will stimulate economic growth.
“Government should support farmers and agribusiness practitioners because Nigeria has no business importing food.
“Agriculture provides the platform for tourism; agriculture provides bio-fuel for vehicles; and agriculture provides cotton, wool and leather for clothing and furniture.
“It provides raw materials for our industries and the food that we eat to remain secured and healthy,’’ he said.