Delta State Commissioner for Agriculture, Hon. Austin Chikezie has assured Deltans especially farmers that the Central Bank of Nigeria’s Anchor Borrowers Scheme is working and it’s a financial model for small holder farmers in rice, cassava, and fish. It is meant to increase production and supply of raw materials to food processors.
He noted that over sixty thousand farmers have been registered across the selected enterprises of cassava, rice and fisheries. About four thousand farmers have been fully accredited and approved by the Central Bank of Nigeria to participate in the first phase of the programme.
He added that farmers are expected to own verifiable farm sites, open account with Bank of Agriculture and provide Bank Verification Number. Certified input suppliers and reliable off takers have been screened and selected for the execution of the programme.
Hon. Chikezie stated that CBN has set aside two billion naira to implement this programme in the state in collaboration with the ministry of Agriculture and the Bank of Agriculture. Payment for the supply of inputs to participants has commenced. Governor Okowa had approved the state participation in the accredited Agricultural Development Scheme which is targeted at empowering the youths within the ages of 18-35years in cluster farms not less than 100 hectares under the anchors borrowers model.
He said that Delta State is participating in tomatoes and fisheries clusters and a total of 760 youths have been profiled for the tomatoes cluster which will utilize the green house technology and over 500 youths have been profiled for the fisheries clusters.