The Plateau state government, in collaboration with UPL Limited, an agro-allied company, has embarked on Potato disease prevention programme under the Agricultural Development Programme (ADP).
According to the state government, the objective of the programme was to sensitise Irish potato farmers in Bokkos Local Government Area of the state on effective ways of preventing the plant’s disease.
The ADP Programme Manager, Philip Gonap, who acknowledged that potato blight had been a major challenge facing potato production in the state in the last six years said that potato farmers in the state had recorded huge loses owing to incessant outbreak of the fungal disease.
“It is no longer news that Plateau state produces 95 per cent of Irish potato being consumed in this country. But since 2012, potato blight has been the major problem facing the effective production of the root crop, and potato farmers have been recording huge losses as a result.” He said.
“We have to effectively tackle the dreaded crop disease and we decided to organize a field day where farmers and other stakeholders will meet to brainstorm on how to contain the disease” He added.
Speaking at the event, Theddeaus Yelwa, the Project Manager, Plateau Potato Value Chain, said that the decision to organize the field day was inevitable; noting that the value chain project was aimed at improving potato production, storage, value addition and marketing in the state.
“Government cannot do it alone; that is why the stakeholders’ collaboration is needed to tackle all problems militating against hitch-free production of potato in Plateau.” He said.