Rapid Assessment of Protected Cultivation in Nigeria

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This comprehensive study explores the landscape of greenhouse farming in Nigeria, focusing on its regional variations, production challenges, market dynamics, and policy implications. Nigeria's climatic diversity necessitates distinct approaches to greenhouse farming, with the southern region characterized by high temperatures and ample rainfall, contrasting with the arid to semi-arid conditions of the north. These disparities influence crop choices, pest management strategies, and production timelines. The study reveals that while greenhouse farming addresses gaps in fresh produce supply to urban markets, challenges such as pest pressures, diseases, and soil management persist. Farmers predominantly use low-tech solutions like shade nets and manual ventilation due to limited access to advanced technologies and trained personnel. Energy remains a significant operational cost, with reliance on diesel generators underscoring the need for renewable alternatives. Market access primarily targets supermarkets and hospitality sectors, highlighting the demand for high-quality, locally produced vegetables. However, market standards, including quality grading and safety certifications, remain inconsistent. The sector's growth potential is hindered by inadequate extension services, poor regulatory frameworks, and the recent ban on certain fertilizers, impacting crop yields and profitability. Despite these challenges, there is growing optimism and interest in greenhouse farming, supported by private investments and initiatives like the Dutch Funded HortiNigeria Program. Recommendations include policy advocacy for fertilizer regulation, increased investment in renewable energy, enhanced training programs, and stronger market linkages. These efforts aim to bolster Nigeria's greenhouse sector, ensuring sustainable agricultural practices, enhanced food security, and economic resilience. This study underscores the pivotal role of protected cultivation in Nigeria's agricultural transformation, provided adequate support and strategic interventions are implemented to mitigate current challenges and foster sectoral growth.
Climate variability, Market acess