Institute distributes post-harvest storage facilities to five states
The Nigerian Stored Products Research Institute (NSPRI), Ilorin, Kwara State, last week, began the distribution of storage facilities and COVID-19 palliatives to farmers in five states.
Speaking at the event, the Executive Director of the Institute, Dr Patricia Pessu, listed the beneficiary states to include Kwara, Kogi, Niger, Edo and Delta.
She stated that the gesture was aimed at adding value and boosting the socio-economic development of farmers in the benefitting states.
The agency has the mandate to conduct researches, build capacities and disseminate research outputs on post-harvest management of locally produced agricultural crops.
She explained that the facilities distributed included improved post-harvest technologies like NSPRI smoking kiln, ice fish box, parabolic solar dryer and NSPRI hermetic steel drums, among others.
Pessu stated that the facilities would improve the post-harvest handling and safety of agricultural commodities in Nigeria, citing the NSPRI smoking kiln as an efficient technology for drying fish and meat.
“The use of NSPRI smoking kiln ensures high quality products with permissible poly-aromatic hydrocarbons,” she said, while describing the ice fish box as a cold chain technology developed for the extension of the shelf-life of fresh fish.
“It is (also) an effective means of handling fish for transportation, distribution, and marketing.
“NSPRI hermetic steel drum is an airtight technology developed by NSPRI for non-chemical preservation of dried crops products, including grains, pulses, roots, tubers, fruits, vegetables, fisheries, and livestock,” she added.
Pessu added that the NSPRI steel drum could be used at household and small-scale storage levels. Also speaking, Mr Saba Gideon-Issa, Kwara State Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development, commended the institute for distributing the storage facilities, advising farmers to make judicious use of the facilities as ‘’this will add value to their agricultural endeavours.”
Gideon-Issa also admonished them not to ‘’hoard” the equipment, but put them to good use.