85,000 Oyo farmers were registered in 2012.
The Federal Director of Agriculture in Oyo State, Adebayo Lasisi, said on Wednesday that about 250,000 farmers would be registered by the end of 2013.
Mr. Lasisi, who gave the figure at a media briefing in Ibadan, said that only 85,000 farmers were registered in 2012 in the state.
According to him, five million farmers were registered across the country in 2012.
He said that with more farmers coming to register in the state in 2013, they would be able to benefit from the Growth Enhancement Scheme (GES) of the Agricultural Transformation Agenda.
He said that only 16,000 farmers in Oyo State redeemed their fertiliser allocation in 2012.
Mr. Lasisi expressed the hope that a greater number of Oyo-based farmers would avail themselves of the opportunity provided by the GES in 2013.
The director said that some cocoa farmers from the state complained that they did not really need the five bags of inorganic fertiliser given to each of them at 50 per cent subsidy.
The official said that the farmers had told the Ministry that the droppings from cocoa leaves constituted enough organic fertiliser for them.
“For cocoa farmers, this year, inorganic fertiliser is removed from what they will be given.
“What remains are subsidised agro-chemicals and insecticides, while cocoa pods will be given to them free of charge.
“The total cost of inputs for them will now be N32,000, but because of subsidy, they will pay N16,000. We believe with this great reduction in cost, more cocoa farmers will redeem their wallets this year at the designated agro-input centres.”
Mr. Lasisi recalled that in 2012, the total cost of inputs for each cocoa farmer was N88,000, but they paid N44,000 due to the 50 per cent subsidy.
The director said that he had held three fruitful meetings with agro-input dealers, suppliers and participating banks under the GES, adding that the fertiliser distribution would be launched in May.
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