Some farmers in Gombe State have raised alarm over the activities of agricultural off-takers and middlemen coming to villages to buy produce from farmers.
“I have refused to sell produce my farm produce because I still have enough money and food stuffs unlike some of my colleagues.
Haruna added that by such activities, off-takers and middlemen were short-changing farmers and making farming less lucrative because they buy at cheaper prices, hoard the produce and inflate prices and make more money than farmers,“ he said.
Ibrahim Shuaibu, a maize farmer from Gelbunu, a neighbouring community said “ I think they (off-takers) are not helping us. They just buy off our produce because they know we need money.
“I sold some bags of maize two weeks ago for N20, 000 per bag because I needed to cover some expenses incurred during farming activities,’’ he said.
Shuaibu appealed to the federal and state governments to increase agricultural loans to accommodate more farmers, adding that it will make farmers less vulnerable to the activities of off-takers.
Some farmers in the community also called on the government to re-introduce agricultural commodity marketing board to protect farmers and make farming more profitable for rural dwellers. (NAN)