Potentials and Contributions of Urban and Peri-Urban Agriculture to the Lagos Megacity Region

Author(s): Vide Adedayo

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Abstract: With the production of only 10% of its food demand and one of the fastest growing cities in the world, the Lagos region is faced with multiple challenges of providing food, jobs healthy environment for its residents. Evolving state agricultural policies and programmes do not consider Urban and Peri-Urban Agricultural (UPA) as potentially viable agricultural scheme and existing UPA enclaves and communities are fast going into extinct due to lack of recognition and the informal nature of UPA in Lagos. The need to therefore enhance food supply, minimize socio-spatial fragmentation and disparities in regional development brought this study to focus.  This paper thus assesses the potentials and contributions of UPA to the Lagos Megacity systems in order to determine the untapped opportunities embedded in UPA in the Lagos region. Selected and relevant stakeholders of UPA (farmers, vendors, distributors, transporters, manure collectors, residents and neighbours, extension agents) were engaged in interviews and discussions across seven communities (Ibafo, Mowe, Ikorodu, Amuwo-Odofin, Tejuoso, Alapere and ojo) within the Lagos megacity region About 320 questionnaires were administered among farmers and other stakeholders.  Both qualitative and quantitative information were collected, collated, transcribed and analyzed using simple descriptive statistical, Pearson Correlation and Multiple Regression techniques. The study identifies income generation, food security and improved livelihood, job creation and use of waste as nutrient as the most important factors that contribute to relevance of UPA activities in the megacity region. Income generation and food security contribute the highest value (0.935). The paper recommends a more participatory UPA strategy in the megacity programme in solving the complex and emerging food insecurity, unemployment, waste disposal and income generation needs of the Lagos megacity region.