White collar first, urban farming second
Meet our 2 urban farmers – Tunde William-Funmilayo the Greenhouse tomato farmer, and Ugoeze (nee) Nwosu, the fish farmer. They are both very well educated urbanites. But, they have left their white collar lives behind and have fully gotten in touch with nature.
Tunde studied Agric Engineering, and therefore had his sights firmly set on agriculture. Ugoeze on the other hand, worked as a banker and a logistics expert before turning to the land.
Ugo and Tunde are but 2 of many many fully hands-on and committed urban farmers in Lagos and around the country. Some of them have gone into farming due to a lack of opportunity. Many more have gone in out of curiosity. However, most urban farmers are in with the genuine belief that they can make a living out of farming.
They will be part of the new inspiration for the growing movement in urban farming.
Urban farming was covered in the above referenced talk show where we met a London trained medical doctor turned mushroom farmer. We also met an articulate former bank employee who now makes exquisite leather bags locally here in Lagos. Interestingly, our bag maker also doubles as a goat farmer right here in the Lekki axis of Lagos!
FIIRO, IITA, others
We will be working very closely with the Federal Institute of Industrial Research Oshodi (FIIRO), to bring the concept and prospect of urban farming closer to interested urbanites.
More interestingly, urban farming can and does in fact allow the farmers earn as much or even more money locally than they did in paid employment. In addition, urban farming has tremendous potential as a foreign exchange earner for the committed farmer by way of export.
What we have learnt from Ugo and Tunde however, is that urban farming requires learning, time and commitment. Most of all , it requires taking action. Moving from the idea and concept stage to actual execution is the difference between the successful farmer and the prospective farmer.