AKSG TO SET UP AUTOMATED FOOD SECURITY RADAR
As part of the efforts to ensure sustainability of the food security and sufficiency drive and boost agriculture in the state, the State Government is fine-tuning the process of establishing an automated agriculture and food security hub which will commence in September 23 this year.
This was disclosed by the Secretary to the State Government, Dr. Emmanuel Ekuwem when members of the Directorate of Agricultural Investments, AKICORP, Uyo, enumerated him as farmer in the ongoing enumeration programme at his office lately.
The automated food security hub to be known as Agriculture and Food Security Network Operating System (FOOD-NOS) will serve as a one stop food hub that will eliminate the burden of farmers sourcing for buyers for their produce from their farms to the local markets, as individual farmer could capture the image of their produce and send the clips directly to the server which will be located in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State.
Explaining how the food security radar would work, the Information and Commination Technology (ICT) guru said that the radar which will cover every village in Akwa Ibom State, will display the type of crops and the quantity available as well as report back same information to intending buyers who will now place orders, without necessarily making physical contact with farmers.
According to the SSG, the only requirement for individual farmer to participate in the virtual food security platform will be an android phone with WhatsApp which the farmer will deploy to capture the picture of the produce and send the image to the server. “With the FOOD – NOS, whatever you produce in your village; cassava, plantain, yam, pigs, fish, etc., all you need is to take a snapshot of it and send the picture or video through WhatsApp. Wherever you are in all the villages in Akwa Ibom State, whatever you produce, send it to the FOOD-NOS which will be located in Uyo,” he said.
The advantage of the automated food security hub, the SSG explained, will serve as the seller’s market which earns more profit to the farmers. The radar will also save farmers the cost of losing perishable crops like vegetables as customers would make immediate payment for the goods.
“There is nothing that an Akwa Ibomite produces that will perish. This is why we talk about food security; crops like tomatoes, cucumber, pineapple, pawpaw that will no longer waste. It will be a type of the sellers’ market and farmers will make profit, “he emphasized.
Restating the State Government’s resolve in turning ongoing projects in agricultural sector into full business entities before the end of this tenure, the SSG said that the enumeration of farmers was very crucial to food security and sufficiency and that the automated food radar will further enhance the economic development of farmers in Akwa Ibom State.
He commended the Executive Director, Directorate of Agricultural Investments, Pastor Umo Eno for the progress made in the enumeration exercise, stressing that agriculture was the business of the future.