The Nigerian Institute of Animal Science (NIAS) has identified agriculture as a key factor to human existence, food security and key to provision of primary production materials to industries.
Prof Eustace Iyayi, Registrar of the institute, said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Tuesday, in Abuja.
Iyayi further identified it as key factor to industrialisation and overall economic emancipation and the independence of any nation.
The registrar emphasised that for the nation to realise the full potentials of agriculture, it must be taken seriously by ensuring all agricultural sub-sectors are given the desired attention.
He specifically advised that animal husbandry should be lifted to a higher level in the country by encouraging those engaged in the sub-sector to do it better.
NAN reports that animal husbandry is a branch of agriculture that is concerned with animal rearing either for the meat, fibre, milk, eggs or other products.
It includes day-to-day care, selective breeding and the raising of livestock.
The registrar added that research institutions should be given the desired attention. Quoting Alhaji Sabo Nanono, Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development who said that, research was central to agricultural productivity and food security.
Iyaya however, noted that the minister believes that the nation has not achieved 10 per cent of its seed potential due to huge gap in research and development.
According to him, without research there cannot be innovations that will help to improve the efficiency of production and also ensure food security which is what we need in our agriculture at the moment.
He says “It is through research you generate ideas and then bring them fort either in terms of new products or you improve on the ones that you have discovered.
“Without discovering new things you are stuck with old ones you have and that is why the Minister has being saying, we need research and innovations to improve on our agriculture.
“Research is what lead to new ideas and new concepts and these will further lead to new products or new systems thereby improve on old products. These are what will lead to agricultural productivity and also lead to food security,” he said.