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Eliminating food waste could effectively increase food/agricultural production in Borno State

to reduce food wastage in order to increase food and order agricultural products.

Photo of Grema Yakaka
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Written by

Lead Applicant Organization Name

University of Maiduguri, Nigeria Sorghum association.

Lead Applicant Organization Type

  • Government (City, State, National, etc.)

If part of a multi-stakeholder entity (i.e. team), provide the names of other organizations and types of stakeholders collaborating with you.

Department of Crop Protection, Faculty of Agriculture, University of Maiduguri Rice Farmers Association.

How long have you / your team been working on this Vision?

  • Just beginning now

Lead Applicant: In what city or town are you located?

Borno state

Lead Applicant: In what country are you located?


Your Selected Place: what’s the name of the Place you’re developing a Vision for?

Maiduguri is located in Nigeria on Latitude 11 40ʹN and 11 44ʹN and Longitude 13o 05ʹE and 13 14ʹ E. It covers a total area of 543 sq. km.

What country is your selected Place located in?

Located at the extreme inner corner of the Gulf of Guinea on the west coast of Africa, Nigeria occupies an area of 923,768 sq. km.

Describe your relationship to the place you’ve selected.

It is largest city in northeastern corner of Nigeria, with highest population and large Land area and am an indigent.

Describe the People and Place: Provide information that would be helpful for an outsider who has never been there and may have no context about this Place to better understand the area.


The city has a predominance of Kanuri people. Other ethnic groups such as Lamang, Babur/Bura and Marghi are also found in the southern part of the state. Shuwa Arabs are mainly the descendants of Arab people.


Islam continues to be the dominant faith practiced in the Borno State of Nigeria, with few adherents of Christianity, or other secular faiths spread throughout and living within the region. Sharia operates as the primary foundation for the development, interpretation, and enforcement of most civic codes and laws. The Roman Catholic Diocese of Maiduguri has its seat in the state. Ekklesiar Yan'Uwa A Nigeria (EYN).


The highest record temperature was 47 °C (117 °F) on 28 May 1983, while the lowest record temperature was 5 °C (41 °F) on 26 December 1979.

Tree planting was a priority of the city's colonial administration, and large trees along major roads give protection from intense sun.

Food Produced

The vegetation of the study area comprises of trees, shrubs and grasses. The major food crop cultivated are maize, millet, sorghum, rice, wheat, cow-pea and groundnut as well as vegetables such as onion, tomato, cabbage, lettuce, spinach and watermelon. Livestock commonly produced are cattle, sheep, goat, poultry and fish farming. 


Malnutrition is a direct or underlying cause of 45 percent of all deaths of under-five children.

Exclusive breastfeeding rates have not improved significantly over the past decade, with only 17 percent of babies being exclusively breastfed during their first six months of life. Just 18 percent of children aged 6-23 months are fed the minimum acceptable diet.

The States in northern Nigeria are the most affected by the two forms of malnutrition – stunting and wasting. High rates of malnutrition pose significant public health and development challenges for the country. 

What is the estimated population (current 2020) in your Place?


Challenges: Describe the current (2020) and the future (2050) challenges that your food system faces.


The present-day Maiduguri is blessed with infrastructural, developmental, commercial, health and industrial activities. Road network, international airport, and rail are some of the means of transportation. There is pipe borne water, boreholes and wells as sources of water.


More than the half of the assessed population in the Maiduguri outer wards (52 percent) is food insecure, of which 5 percent are severely food insecure. The remaining 43 percent are only marginally food secure, therefore their situation could deteriorate if exposed to further shocks or go without food assistance. 


Households’ economic vulnerability is measured through the share of their monthly food expenditures from the total. The higher the share of food expenses, the more vulnerable a household is. In the seven assessed wards of Maiduguri, up to 64 percent of households spend more on food than other essential non-food items every month. 


Maiduguri's population consists mainly of Muslim Kanuri and Shuwa peoples with an admixture of Christian Nigerians from the south. 


The University of Maiduguri was founded in 1975. There is also the College of Medical Sciences. Other higher institutions include the Borno State University, Ramat Polytechnic, College of Agriculture and College of Education, Muhammad Goni College of Legal and Islamic Studies, College of Nursing and Midwifery, College of Health Technology and El-kanemi College of Islamic Theology.

Address the Challenges: Describe how your Vision will address the challenges described in the previous question.

UNICEF’s programme supports the government to implement the National Plan of Action on Food and Nutrition by strengthening health and community systems and fully integrating nutrition into all aspects of the primary health care (PHC) system, with a particular focus on community management of acute malnutrition (CMAM), infant and young child feeding (IYCF) interventions and micronutrient supplementation.

UNICEF’s nutrition interventions are also aligned and convergent with other sector interventions, including those related to antenatal care, the prevention and control of pneumonia and diarrhoea, immunization, deworming, distribution of insecticide-treated mosquito nets, and adolescent girls’ and maternal nutrition.

UNICEF’s nutrition programme complements the efforts of other United Nations agencies and NGOs, with nutrition-sensitive interventions geared towards a shift from emergency to development with long-term nutrition interventions that address stunting and SAM. The UK’s Department for International Development (DFID), Children’s Investment Fund Foundation (CIFF), the European Union, the governments of Japan, Germany, and Netherlands are important nutrition partners.

Since 2009, UNICEF has been supporting Nigeria’s community-based programme for treatment of severe acute malnutrition. Since then, the programme has grown significantly, to become one of the largest UNICEF-supported treatment programmes in the world.

UNICEF works to prevent malnutrition by supporting the education and counselling of mothers and caregivers on how to adequately feed their children, and by providing free micronutrient supplements to children and pregnant women.

With the growing potential for domestic budgets to fund nutrition interventions, UNICEF is increasingly focused on strengthening policies, government systems and accountability to ensure adequate financing of nutrition. Recognizing geographical differences in the scale of malnutrition, UNICEF supports service delivery in the north of the country, including humanitarian nutrition assistance, while providing policy advice at the federal and state levels, helping to increase the ability of the government and partners to coordinate the nutrition sector, proactively identify risk factors for the nutrition status of the population –including poor harvest yields, worsening purchasing power and poor feeding behaviors – and implement measures to mitigate for these. Retuning the IDPs is only possible when Boko Haram insurgency was overcome by the government at National and International levels.

High Level Vision: With these challenges addressed, now provide a high level description of how the Place and the lives of its People will be different than they are now.

Until and when Boko Haram insurgence had been taken care-off in those affected places, then the people will be able to settled and overcome their problem of food wastage, to boost food or agricultural production.

Full Vision: How do you describe your Vision for a regenerative and nourishing food future for your Place and People for 2050?

Around 2.7 million people in the Borno state are projected to be food insecure and considered to be facing crisis or emergency situations. This represents a significant improvement from 3.7 million (Nov 2017) due to the delivery of food and nutrition assistance as well as livelihoods support; improved security conditions which has allowed for farming and market activities in some locations; and favorable climatic conditions for farming. Nevertheless, the food security and nutrition situation remain extremely fragile particularly in Borno State, and IDPs state that food is their largest unmet need. Large populations in the north-east remain dependent on humanitarian assistance to meet their food and cooking energy needs. While there has been some improvement compared to last year, access to farming/grazing land, labor market, productive assets and livelihood activities remains limited. Despite slight improvements, market and trade routes remain disrupted, restricting trade flows and activities. This is further exacerbated by route disruptions during the rainy season and by sporadic hostilities. Vulnerable people arriving from inaccessible areas are in critical need of access to nutritious foods. Significant areas also remain inaccessible to humanitarian actors, and it is likely that the needs in those areas are similar or worse than those in adjoining accessible areas.

Response plan The Food Security Sector (FSS) will prioritize assistance to areas most affected by conflict and displacement, targeting people in crisis and emergency phases of food and nutrition insecurity, though no population in Nigeria is categorized, the majority of which are in Borno State. As new areas with emerging needs become accessible, the sector will prioritize life-saving food assistance to the most vulnerable groups. Where feasible, food assistance will be increasingly provided through cash transfers while in-kind and voucher transfers will continue to be utilized. Partners will scale up conditional assistance, such as cash-for-work/assets activities to support community asset rehabilitation, targeting people at household and community level to improve resilience and coping mechanisms. When possible, emergency agriculture inputs/asset assistance will be linked to medium/long-term agricultural projects in stable areas to enhance recovery of agriculture livelihoods (including crop production, livestock, fisheries, forestry and natural resources management), contributing. Partners will provide first-line emergency food assistance to people on the move, including people who newly arrive from inaccessible areas. Depending on the location, the modalities of addressing the food needs of new arrivals will vary. For those who are vulnerable and unable to cook, the FSS will support partners to provide wet feeding support; while in most locations, new arrivals who are able to cook for themselves will be encouraged to prepare their own food with support from partners. Once these same families are settled, they will be supported with monthly food assistance through the most appropriate modality. Initially, assistance is provided to all newly arrived families in order to meet the urgent needs without delay. In areas where displacement is protracted, the FSS will advocate for livelihood support to the communities. When possible, food assistance will be synchronized with livelihood input distribution. The transition from food assistance will be gradual to ensure their immediate food needs are met and mitigate any possibility of resorting to negative coping strategies. Assistance will be carefully coordinated with government distributions, to ensure food assistance is complementary and fills gaps. The FSS will ensure sufficient food supplies are pre-positioned in key locations to immediately respond to any population displacements. Where security, safe access to land and civilians’ freedom of movement allow, increasing agriculture and livelihood activities will complement food assistance to support access to productive assets and income generating activities. Food security and livelihoods programming will continue in parallel of the emergency phase to enhance rural and urban livelihoods to build self-reliance. Where appropriate, scaling up early recovery and resilience-based programmes will foster long-term self-sufficiency. Through an integrated approach to analyzing and addressing food security, integrated, multisectoral interventions will be encouraged: for example, nutrition-sensitive livelihood activities to enhance dietary diversification and nutrient intake, which are also highlighted in the Government’s Agricultural Sector Food Security and Nutrition Strategy 2016–2025. Increasing Safe Access to Fuel and Energy (SAFE) programming will help address immediate food utilization needs, maximize nutrition intake, and minimize protection risks, health impacts and environmental hazards. The FSS, led by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, will continue to work closely with the federal and state authorities to support the effectiveness of local capacities in food security response, as outlined in the ongoing collaboration with the state-level Agriculture Development Programmes (ADPs) and their extension services. In areas with improved stability and safety, partners will continue to work to re-establish and protect livelihoods assets together with the vulnerable and food insecure households, including female-headed households and youth, through cash-for-work/food for assets schemes that will integrate protection considerations and strengthen resilience in the communities. Basic inputs/assets for agricultural/livestock/ fishery production (such as crop and vegetable seeds, farming tools, fertilizer, laying hens, small ruminants, animal feed, and fishing kits) will be provided to IDPs and returnees who have settled and have unhindered access to land and water sources for families to safely produce their own food. Community based productive assets and agriculture infrastructure (including irrigation systems, water supply structures, post harvest handling and processing structures, and tree nurseries) will be rehabilitated and enhanced to support agriculture production. Target communities, such as farmers’ groups of

both men and women, will receive support from agriculture extension services and other specialized institutions to enhance their capacity through trainings in agriculture-based business entrepreneurship and marketing, climate smart agriculture, value addition, post-harvest handling and processing, as well as natural resource management among others. Where possible, livelihood and resilience interventions will be integrated with nutrition activities to ensure enhanced resilience against potential future shocks.  While improved data collection and analysis has led to better understanding of people in need, the food security and nutrition status of affected people will be closely monitored throughout the year. The sector will work to enhance collection of sex and age disaggregated data as well as protection risk analysis of food security and livelihood interventions. Within the fluid context, in addition to periodic assessments, emphasis will be placed on conducting post-distribution monitoring and end of project evaluation to ensure that scarce resources reach the most vulnerable, complementing government interventions where possible, and preventing duplication of efforts. The sector will continue to support the CH process, joint food security and nutrition assessments with a special focus on inaccessible areas, livelihood and market assessments, as well as market price monitoring exercises to guide the prioritization of areas of assistance, harmonization of assistance packages, and ensure that the most appropriate type of assistance is provided and the most appropriate modality (cash, voucher, in-kind, and/or mixed/multi-modality) is used.  Strong coordination with all sector partners as well as with other sectors and stakeholders, led by the Government of Nigeria, will further strengthen an integrated, multisectoral food security response informed by contingency planning. This will include: continuation of existing sector task forces for agriculture and livelihoods, harmonization of standards and targeting; strengthening collaboration with the Protection, Nutrition, WASH, Camp Coordination and Camp Management sectors, as well as the Cash Working Group and development partners for joint responses and advocacy that address the underlying factors of food insecurity.  The FSS, as a forum with active participation of local organizations, will build the capacity of and strengthen partnerships with local institutions and NGOs. Capacity strengthening of local organizations, with an emphasis on the involvement and empowerment of women and youth, will be prioritized. Sector partners will provide technical assistance to federal/local stakeholders, including the Government of Nigeria, to improve collaboration on needs identification and assistance delivery.

How did you hear about the Food System Vision Prize?

  • Conference/event
  • At school, University of Maiduguri, Nigeria, Department of Crop Protection


Join the conversation:

Photo of Mohammed Hassan (PhD)

Hello Grema Yakaka,
There is only six (6) remaining to submit the work (31st January, 2020). Try and have a look at the Food System Vision Prize Submission Pocket guide in the following web page: It will help you refine your work.
Best regards,
Mohammed Hassan.

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