If the teenagers studying in a secondary school in Nigeria ever thought that agriculture was not ‘a teen thing’, they were in for a surprise! A group of 133 students (75 girls and 58 boys), who signed up for a training session with experts from ICRISAT and other partners, got to use farm implements, create tasty sorghum-based dishes and learn about making profits in agriculture.
The students of The Intercontinental Secondary School, Kano, Nigeria, participated in a hands-on training program on producing and processing sorghum as a viable business venture, with inputs from several industry experts.
The special capacity-building program comprised three key activities:
- Talks on sorghum product development
Dr Hakeem Ajeigbe, Country Representative-Kenya, ICRISAT and Dr Ignatius Angarawai, Senior Scientist, Sorghum Breeding, ICRISAT, presented talks to the youngsters about sorghum processing and product development for better nutrition and higher incomes.
- Demonstration of small-scale agricultural machines to reduce drudgery and post-harvest losses
Dr Ajeigbe emphasized the importance of mechanization in agriculture, saying, “Mechanization will reduce the drudgery associated with agricultural activities; almost all activities can be mechanized even at a small scale.”
Also, Engr. Aliyu Adinoyi, Scientific Officer, ICRISAT, demonstrated the hammer mill with cyclone for income generation and food safety.
- Hands-on lessons on sorghum-related product preparations
Mrs Hafsat I Sulaiman, Ms Bilkisu Adeshina and Ms Shatinyan Christopher (ICRISAT extension officers) demonstrated the preparation of sorghum- and groundnut-based products such as pop sorghum, pap (Kunun Gyada), Hallaka Kobo, cakes, doughnuts, bread and crisps. The students also tried their hand at preparing some of the above recipes.
ICRISAT along with the ATASP-1* program and the Agricultural Promotion Policy (APP) of the Federal Government of Nigeria conducted this training program on 29 November 2018.
The main goal of the training session was to trigger interest in youth and to get them to be more passionate about agriculture and related activities as viable business and livelihood options.
For more on ICRISAT’s work on sorghum, click here.
For more on ICRISAT’s work in Nigeria, click here.