The Federal Government and other relevant stakeholders have been called upon to come up with a national soil information systems capable of ensuring food production, thereby reducing hunger in the country.

A professor of soil survey and land evaluation, Gabriel Akinboye Oluwatosin, made the call while delivering the 377th inaugural lecture of the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife titled: ‘Soil in Food and National Security: Matter Arising’.

Oluwatosin while addressing the gathering noted that the world face a modern soil crisis and soil degradation.

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He recommended that a national soil information system is needed in order to ensure easy connectivity among scientists and land users, noting that food and national security are linked to the soil.

Oluwatosin while speaking further said that Nigeria is running out of arable and grazing lands.

He said to avoid further degradation, land should be used in accordance with its capability.

“Food and national security are intrinsically linked to the soil. Attempting to accommodate growing food demand through unsustainable intensification and management practices is degrading the soil and we are running out of arable and grazing lands.

“To avoid further degradation, land should be used in accordance with its capability. We must care for the soil and take measures to maintain its capability and working conditions in order to restore what has been lost through regenerative agriculture.

“Mr Vice Chancellor sir, I would like to make the following recommendations: Development of a national holistic soil information systems based on the genoform and capability systems for easy connectivity among scientists and land users. Nigeria needs semi-detailed digital soil maps for ease of planning and policy making.

“Development and reporting of a national soil capability system and a resolution that is effective across scales (farm, state and regional) to underpin account for soil.

“Adoption of elevation strategies and indicators of the continuum of soil condition in the form of a minimum data set as well as soil management at local, spatial and temporal scales.

“Reporting the value of the soil asset through developing a statement of Nigeria’s natural capital.

“Developing a national account for soil in order to recognise the value that soil contributes to the financial and business sectors”.

Dignitaries at the event are Vice-Chancellor, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile Ife, Professor Adebayo Bamire; Director, Institute of Agricultural Research and Training (IAR&T), Ibadan, Professor Veronica Obatolu and other management staff of IAR&T.



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