We shall return Nigeria to days of groundnut pyramids, says Awofisayo
President of Harvestfield Industries Limited, Martins Aderemi Awofisayo, an indigenous agro and healthcare company recently signed-in by the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA), Ibadan, for the manufacture and distribution of Aflasafe, has assured to return Nigeria to lost days of groundnut pyramids, as well as multiply yield in other major agricultural crops.
Awofisayo said its vision is to be the leading solution-provider for agricultural farming systems in Nigeria and the West Africa sub region, noting that it is working in tandem with the ongoing efforts of the Federal Government to achieve zero reject of products for exports, and boost foreign earning.
“At Harvestfield and ever before our selection for the assignment, we had been on the field, preparatory to our emergence, to ensure we are on ground and ready to perform the assignment. We already have 18 warehouses within the country, which cover all the geopolitical zones and in the next few weeks, an additional eight warehouses would be ready for use. The Federal Ministry of Agriculture is also about being magnanimous by its intention to make Aflasafe available in all greenhouses in Nigeria.
“So the issue of scarcity of the product or its unavailability in any part of the country is out of question. This year alone, Harvestfield will produce and sell 1,500 metric tonnes of Aflasafe, enough to cover 150,000 hectares of maize and groundnuts. While we are constructing our own Aflasafe factory at our manufacturing complex on Lagos-Ibadan expressway, we will also sign a toll manufacturing contract with IITA’s Business Incubation Platform for Aflasafe production,” he said.
The president said it has given itself the assignment to undertake a nationwide aflatoxin-awareness campaign, targeting all the six geopolitical zones, adding that it has reached 54 communities across 28 states.
“The campaign helped us a great deal to refine our awareness-creation and marketing approach. Our latest target now is to further reach not less than 170 communities, we have reached 70 at present and would surely in the following week, embark on the second phase, which we would have rounded off before the next planting season. We shall also embark alongside on sensitisation of farmers, millers, farm-produce aggregators, exporters and food processors on the dangers posed by aflatoxins, the solution Aflasafe offers and how it works.
“In the area of price regulation to prevent overzealous middlemen from making the product unaffordable to end-users who are the resource-poor farmers, there is an agreement already drawn between us to take care of regulation of prices. The agreement has a fixed price acceptable by all stakeholders and which is generally perceived to be very fair on the rural farmers who are the end users. No unscrupulous or overzealous middlemen can have an opportunity of perforating the process.”
He assured IITA that within the five years agreed time; they would be so overwhelmed by their performance and delivery that they would be chasing them around to turn around their other intervention products.