Some 50 farmers drawn from the ten regions of the country have been given free improved maize seeds of the LG 345 specie by the Chamber of Agriculture, Fisheries, Livestock and Forest of Cameroon. The second generation agriculture initiated by President Paul Biya warrants increase production of food crops like maize.
Maize production in Cameroon concordant sources say staggers around 2.1 million tons, far below demand which FAO estimates at 3 million tons. Production impediments such as access to seeds, inputs as well as climatic variations are blamed. The government and other stakeholders are bent on reversing the trend by increasing production.
The Chamber of Agriculture, Fisheries, Livestock and Forestry of Cameroon (CAPEF) has thus taken a bold step to introduce a new variety said to be resistant and high yielding and has distributed some 252 bags of 5kg each of the improved maize seeds to some 50 producers drawn from the different ecological zones of the country. The improved LG 345 variety distributed free of charge to producers for experimentation is said to be high yielding producing 8-12 tons per hectare depending on the region. According to the 1st Vice President of CAPEF, Moussa Koue, the maize seeds distributed to producers is inline of the constant quest for improved high yielding planting seeds for increase agricultural production in order to make Cameroon food self-sufficient.
To the President of the Agriculture Section of CAPEF, Elissar Mbang Ekoutou, present maize production per hectare in the country is still low with 1-4 tons per hectare depending on the variety. The LG 345 variety has been tested and proven to be high yielding from the laboratory. It will be experimented by the beneficiary producers as from the next planting season in different parts of the country for the first time. “If the productivity is high, then we will intensify its production,” she told reporters.
The seeds have been distributed to volunteers who wants to experiment it in the field with different planting techniques and in all ecological zones of the country. Agronomist from the Ministry of Agriculture would evaluate the impact and the productivity of the specie before it is vulgarised depending how well it will fare in the farms. One of the beneficiary producers, Fabien Medou whose farms are based in Esse, Mefou and Afamba Division of the Centre Region, said the initiative is a motivation for him as a producer given that they are often confronted with difficulties such as accessing to seeds and fertilizers. Medou with his Ferme Akiba got 20kg to experiment in his one hectare field in Esse. The youth said, he is following President Biya’s advice to Cameroon youth to engage in agriculture which is the bedrock of Cameroon’s economic development.