Over 460,000 Wheat Growers Trained To Get Higher Yields

ISLAMABAD, (UrduPoint / Pakistan Point News – 8th Nov, 2023) In a move to address the surging local dietary demands, the government under its ‘Crop Enhancement Program’ has provided comprehensive training to more than 460,000 wheat growers across the key crop-producing areas of the country.

The Primary objective of this extensive training effort was to elevate the per-acre yield of wheat, thereby meeting the escalating requirements of the domestic market, said an official in the Ministry of National Food Security and Research.

Talking to APP here on Wednesday, he said that the crop enhancement project was a component of the Prime Minister Agriculture Emergency Program, which was launched in 2019 with a cost of Rs15.789 billion for the uplift of local agriculture and livestock sectors.

The share of the federal government was comprised of Rs 3.750 billion, the provincial government‘s contribution was calculated at Rs7.56 billion, whereas Rs4.47 billion was the farmer’s share, he added.

The other aims of the initiative were equipping wheat growers with essential knowledge and skills, the government aims to fortify the country’s food security and ensure a sustainable supply of this vital staple crop, he added.

He said that under the program, the government intended to enhance the output of all major crops including wheat, rice, sugarcane, maize and cotton to attain sustainable agriculture growth and development in the country, besides enhancing farm income of growers, particularly small landholders.

Due to the measures taken for the wheat crop enhancement, wheat output grew by 32 mund per acre and overall wheat productivity grew by 4 million tons with net financial benefits of Rs400 billion, he said adding that under the program different research stations and laboratories were also upgraded.

It is worth mentioning here that the Federal Committee on Agriculture has fixed wheat sowing targets for crop season 2023-24 at 8.998 million hectares to produce about 32.12 metric tons of grains to tackle the local requirements as well as for exporting.

Meanwhile, about 729,000 metric tons of high-quality certified wheat seeds would also be available to the local farming communities during the current season which comprises over 46 percent of the total local demand and strengthen the efforts to enhance the per-acre yield of the wheat.

In addition to seeds, the government was implementing various strategies to guarantee an ample supply of essential agricultural inputs, such as fertilizers, pesticides and access to finance to achieve the fixed targets of the season.

To ensure the smooth supply of fertilizers at affordable prices across the country, the government has launched an anti-hoarding campaign, besides taking stern measures to curb the smuggling of commodities including wheat, sugar and fertilizers, he added.

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