In order to ensure their families health and the environment’s preservation, Nigerian farmers have been urged to use caution when applying pesticides to their crops.
Mr. Jochen Luckscheiter, director of the Heinrich Boll Foundation Nigeria, made the request during a session on the Nigeria Pesticide Atlas for social media influencers and journalists. The occasion took place in the Agro-Forestry Project Farm in Abuja’s Kwali neighbourhood.
In the farming system, pesticides are used to reduce output losses, but industry experts have expressed worries about the overuse of the chemicals, which they claim now leads to health issues and soil degradation that is bad for the ecology.
The purpose of the workshop was to raise public awareness of the effects of farmers’ heavy usage of harmful pesticides in the agricultural sector.
In order to boost production, Luckscheiter emphasized the necessity to limit the amount of pesticides used in agriculture. He also suggested that farms should rely more on organic input.
There is a lot of information available that doesn’t rely on artificial input to boost output, he continued, adding that “you can increase crop productivity without using pesticides and artificial fertilizer.”
According to Luckscheiter, a sizable number of pesticides are either no longer authorized or are prohibited in the European Union (EU) because of their detrimental effects on human health and the environment.
Therefore, he advised farmers to use pesticides responsibly, emphasizing that they were extremely harmful to health even though they were intended to help workers on farms produce while they were on duty.
According to Anaele Cynthia, Executive Director of Chen Education and Development Empowerment (CEDE), there is a need to inform Nigerians about the harmful effects of hazardous pesticides smuggled into the nation. Cynthia claimed that the four to forty percent increase in the amount of harmful chemicals in pesticides has had a negative impact on the soil and ecology.
To promote healthy living and a safer farming system in the nation, she contends that stricter legislation prohibiting farmers from using harmful and dangerous pesticides must be passed.
She emphasized the necessity for the government and stakeholders to be concerned about the health of farmers and consumers of their produce, stating that “pesticides may cause acute and variety of adverse health effects.”
In addition, Mr. Samuel Robert-Kwasari, Chief Executive/Chief Farmer of the Be the Help Foundation Agro Forestry Project, stated that it was necessary to cease using pesticides and return to the traditional manner of farming.
According to Robert-Kwasari, as farmers battle to control pests, it has become apparent that some pesticides are ineffective, while other crops have negative side effects and farm soil deterioration.
(C) The Sun