Agriculture

FAO Donates Technology to Improve Agriculture Data Collection

Via Nigerian Tribune

http://tribuneonlineng.com/

In a bid to ensure Nigerians have easy access to more data on agriculture, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) in Nigeria handed over the Computer Assisted Personal Interview (CAPI) system developed with the support of the Agricultural Market and Information System (AMIS) to the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.

As part of the deliverables of AMIS, the CAPI System was developed in Nigeria for the collection of agricultural data. The CAPI System will be domiciled in the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (FMARD) for supervision and monitoring, following the handover ceremony to the Nigerian Ministry of Agriculture.

“The only way agricultural production can be sustained is when the farmers can be able to reach out to various markets to sell their products, and make some returns to enable them to invest; today’s event gives us a unique opportunity to move away from traditional marketing system, monitor and evaluation system to a more digital and sustainable method where we will be able to ensure that whatever we have produced, figures we are going to have in terms of production is accurate, and therefore food security will be ensured,” said the Ministry’s Permanent Secretary, Bukar Hassan.

The CAPI system is also equipped with capacity to provide near real-time agriculture data, through crowd-sourced data from various players in the agriculture value chain. The platform has a web-based repository that will provide easy access to agricultural data producing agencies and other agricultural market stakeholders across Nigeria.

Real-time data gathering has always been a problem in the agricultural sector. With this CAPI System, investors, agriculture merchants, traders and farmers can make better decisions and optimize their activities in their respective roles

On behalf of FAO, Programme/Liaison Officer Patrick David reiterated that the system would bring a paradigm shift in the way data on agriculture is collected in Nigeria.

“The ability to have data move across states and borders is very vital for the agricultural sector in today’s global market environment. The AMIS CAPI System will help in achieving this for the various stakeholders in the agriculture sector in Nigeria. Our globally connected world gives us the opportunity of a mutually beneficial relationship. This relationship will further strengthen our capacity to prevent food price volatility and bolster our resolve for global food security”, he said.

Through the use of data, businesses and certainly, players in the agriculture sector, are able to connect with a broader range of consumers and maximize profit. With data, they can now understand their consumer needs better and through the collection and analysis of these data, policy makers are able to make better and informed decisions.

According to the National Project Coordinator of AMIS, Olutayo Oyawale, the CAPI system will provide an unprecedented access to agriculture information from various stakeholders across the country that will, in turn, deliver tremendous growth for the agriculture sector.

“Real-time data gathering has always been a problem in the agricultural sector. With this CAPI System, investors, agriculture merchants, traders and farmers can make better decisions and optimize their activities in their respective roles”, he noted.

The CAPI system will also have an impact on the ability of other Ministries, Departments, and Agencies (MDAs) to execute their mandates by reducing cost of data production as it will eliminate cost of printing paper questionnaires, hiring data entry operators, and use of courier services. The solution will also reduce data production time by providing near real-time data from the field to data processing units of the MDAs. In addition, the system will enable a proper monitoring and evaluation of data collection via the use of GPS data submission alongside every data collected.

FAO also conducted a pilot use of crowdsourcing data collection system for 18 crops, covering a period of 4 months from November 2016, from four markets and ten Local Government Associations (LGAs) in Kaduna State, using a well-coordinated crowdsourcing operation in the State. The pilot exercise employed the services of about 801 farmers and traders combined in Kaduna state.

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